FIFA panel upholds one-year ban on ex-German FA head Niersbach

Fri Dec 16, 2016 12:16pm EST
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ZURICH (Reuters) - FIFA officials have rejected an appeal by former German Football Association (DFB) president Wolfgang Niersbach, thereby maintaining a one-year ban on him imposed in July.

The German has responded by stepping down from all his football roles. He also said he would not take his case to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, putting an end to his career as an administrator.

Niersbach was suspended by world soccer's ruling body for failing to report potential misconduct surrounding the award of 2006 World Cup hosting rights to Germany.

"The Appeals Committee determined that a one-year ban from taking part in any football-related activity at national and international level was adequate in this case," the FIFA committee said in a statement on Friday.

"In consequence Mr Niersbach's ban for a period of one year is maintained as from 25 July 2016."

The Appeals Committee said he had violated articles related to disclosure, cooperation and conflict of interest.

Niersbach, who sat on the FIFA Council and is also a member of the executive committee of European soccer's governing body UEFA, though currently suspended, resigned as DFB president in November 2015.

"His personal decision ... to accept the consequences of misconduct in the past deserves recognition and respect," the DFB said.

Current president Reinhard Grindel will now campaign for a position on UEFA's executive committee, the DFB added.   Continued...

Wolfgang Niersbach walks out of the stage during the Extraordinary FIFA Congress in Zurich, Switzerland February 26, 2016. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann/File Photo