ROME: Serie A side Cagliari have been deducted three points after taking unauthorised legal action against a former player for alleged defamation.
The relegation-threatened club took action against defender Gianluca Grassadonia after he made a series of critical comments about Cagliari in an newspaper interview.
The Italian Soccer Federation (FIGC) have punished the club for breaking their rules on taking disputes outside the realm of sporting justice without permission.
Cagliari President Massimo Cellino said he will appeal.
“To the players and the squad I just say that the points have only been taken away temporarily,” he told La Gazzetta dello Sport yesterday.
“This should not distract us from the road to safety (from relegation). I'm relaxed about how I handled things. I have always been careful to respect the rules. It's a big misunderstanding.”
Cellino was also banned for a year and fined 10,000 euros, while the club received a fine of 20,000 euros.
The three-point deduction, if upheld, leaves Cagliari with just 15 points from 25 games and would be a huge blow to their hopes of survival. – Reuters