Created on 03-05-2010 at 00:00 AM
Bayern have all but sealed the German league title, but the club is now going into battle on Franck Ribéry’s behalf, led from the front by Karl-Heinz Rummenigge. “I’ll appear personally in Nyon,” the FCB chairman announced, “we’re going to fight. We owe it to ourselves, and especially to Franck.” On Wednesday 5 May at UEFA headquarters in Switzerland, Bayern will formally appeal against Ribéry’s three-match European ban.
In the 1-0 Champions League semi-final first leg victory over Lyon, the France international was shown a straight red card for a foul on Olympique striker Lisandro Lopez. UEFA's Control and Disciplinary Body handed the France superstar a three-game suspension for the infringement. “The key thing is for us to persuade the UEFA tribunal that it wasn’t violent conduct, but only serious foul play,” Rummenigge explained. FCB will not contest the card itself, but will argue that their player committed the lesser offence. “If we succeed, there may be a small chance of us achieving our goal of Franck appearing in the final.”
Rummenigge is convinced the three-game ban is overly harsh. “Everyone who’s ever played football has accepted that, whatever it was, it wasn’t deliberate,” he commented. “The player who was fouled, Lisandro Lopez, has said that in public, which is definitely helpful.”