UEFA consider Wenger appeal

2011-08-23 13:28

London - European football's governing body UEFA will decide later on Tuesday whether to grant Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger a stay of execution over his two-match Champions League ban.

This would allow Wenger to fulfil his duties in Wednesday night's crucial Champions League play-off against Udinese.

UEFA said in a statement: "Please note that Arsenal has lodged an appeal against the Control and Disciplinary Body decision taken yesterday (Monday) and has requested a stay of execution.

"The Appeals Body chairman will deal with the stay of execution today (Tuesday) and we shall be in a position to let you know the decision of the Appeals Body Chairman by the end of play today."

UEFA issued the two-match ban on Monday after Wenger was found guilty of breaching the terms of an earlier ban by ignoring rules on communicating with his bench during the first leg of their tie against the Italian club last week.

Wenger had been forced to watch the first leg from the Emirates Stadium stands as he served a one-match touchline ban for abusing Swiss referee Massimo Busacca in the aftermath of last season's stormy Champions League defeat at Barcelona.

However, the Frenchman believed he was still free to communicate with assistant Pat Rice by passing messages to first-team coach Boro Primorac, who was seated next to the Gunners chief and then phoned the information down to the bench.

The trio did exactly that throughout the first half but television pictures showed the rather blatant nature of the plan and UEFA, keen not to be embarrassed, warned Wenger at the break that he was contravening the rules and he withdrew from communication.

Arsenal immediately indicated their intention to appeal, but for the purposes of speed have decided to initially seek a delay to the ban before contesting it fully.