I am not surprised to hear that Juventus boss Antonio Conte’s 10-month touchline ban remains intact after his appeal against the ban failed.
The Italian federation (FIGC) have been pretty clear in their thinking that they believe that Conte was complicit in match fixing while in charge of Siena.
Conte has always maintained his innocence and his legal team appealed the first sentence on Monday in a bid to have him acquitted, or at least get his punishment reduced. Conte is now expected to launch a second appeal, that will be heard in September
As expected Juventus have came out in support of their manager with Juventus President Andrea Agnelli blasting the sporting justice system for their decision.
“Today’s Federal Court sentence confirms our worst suspicions on the matter that involved Antonio Conte,” announced Agnelli on the official Juventus website.
“For many months I have observed this situation with incredulity, accompanied by a growing sense of shock, for a sporting justice system that increasingly resembles a witch-hunt.
“Today we’ve reached the apex. When faced with a clear victory in the court, they decided to kill logic and apply the ban in an arbitrary manner, even doubling it.
“Basically, after months and months in which we heard a certain Filippo Carobbio explain his Coach invited the players to draw the game during a pre-match meeting (Novara-Siena), today we discover Conte’s total innocence in that incident, but they are clinging to the second accusation (Albinoleffe-Siena) to apply the same punishment as the first trial.
“This ignores all good faith for truth, arithmetic and justice – real justice.
“The entire sporting justice system is happy to perform quick trials with asymmetric approach to different cases, people or worse clubs and with barbaric methods that do not belong in a democracy.
“Not only, this system first of all encourages a plea bargain as an easy way out when insulting the sentiment and sense of justice of the individual, only to then refute it without reason.”
So Juventus will now play the 2012-13 season without Conte on the sidelines. Yes he can still train the club during the week, but it will be a big loss to the Champions to not have Conte available to make half time adjustments or tactical substitutions late in the game.
When it gets to those big Serie A matches against other title contenders, or more importantly, those big Champions League matches, the loss of Conte could cost Juventus the chance to win some silverware this season.