Barcelona striker Luis Suarez has failed in his appeal to have a four-month playing ban overturned but the Court of Arbitration for Sport has cleared him to train with his new club.
The Uruguay international was suspended from all football-related activity for biting Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini at the World Cup, with the punishment also including a nine-match suspension from internationals and a hefty fine.
Suarez, the Uruguayan federation and Barcelona – who spent £75m to sign the striker from Liverpool after he was sent home from Brazil in disgrace – appealed to CAS and the club, at least, have had a degree of success.
Barcelona’s priority was to have Suarez available to work with the team, important in pre-season but essential when he is a new player, and CAS has relented on that issue.
“The CAS Panel has partially upheld the appeal. The sanctions imposed on the player by FIFA have been generally confirmed,” said a statement.
“However, the four-month suspension will apply to official matches only and no longer to other football-related activities (such as training, promotional activities and administrative matters). The CAS Panel found that the sanctions imposed on the player were generally proportionate to the offence committed.
“It has however considered that the stadium ban and the ban from ‘any football-related activity’ were excessive given that such measures are not appropriate to sanction the offence committed by the player and would still have an impact on his activity after the end of the suspension.”