UEFA rejects Malta players’ appeal from football ban

The European footballing body’s appeals board has confirmed bans for four Maltese players over match-fixing offences when they played with the U-21 national team

The Malta U-21 team that played against Montenegro in 2016
The Malta U-21 team that played against Montenegro in 2016

Four ex-national team footballers banned by UEFA over match-fixing offences in December had their appeal rejected by the European footballing association’s appeals body.

UEFA rejected the appeals filed by Samir Arab, Ryan Camenzuli, Llywelyn Cremona and Luke Montebello, who had been found guilty of match-fixing offences when they formed part of the U-21 national team.

Arab had been handed down a two-year ban, Camenzuli an 18-month ban, while Cremona and Montebello were banned from football activity for one year by the UEFA Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body last December.

Two other players - Emanuel Briffa and Kyle Cesare - were handed a lifelong ban from football but their appeals are still pending.

Another player - Matthew Cremona – had been cleared by UEFA and was allowed to participate in any football activities.

The investigation related to two UEFA European Under-21 Championship matches played by Malta against Montenegro on 23 March 2016 and the Czech Republic on 29 March 2016.

Arab, Camenzuli, Cremona and Montebello were banned for “not immediately and voluntarily informing UEFA if approached in connection with activities aimed at influencing in an unlawful or undue manner the course and/or result of a match or competition”.