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Aug 22, 2012

Juve coach Conte has ban upheld

Juventus coach Antonio Conte has had his ten-month ban upheld by an Italian football tribunal.

• Ziegler hopeful of exit

Conte had appealed against the ban, which was imposed by the Italian Football Federation (FIGC) last month. His assistant, Angelo Alessio, was banned for eight months. The two were accused of failing to report match-fixing in games against Novara and Albinoleffe during their time at Siena.

Rejecting Conte's appeal, the tribunal ruled that the ban on the coach - who steered an undefeated Juve to the title last season - would stand.

Although the court modified the original verdict, acquitting Conte of wrongdoing in the game against Novara, it upheld the sentence. He is expected to lodge a second appeal with the Italian Olympic committee's court of arbitration for sport, which is likely to be heard in September.

At the start of the month, Conte had submitted a plea bargain under which he was willing to accept a three-month suspension and a €200,000 fine, but the FIGC said it believed that was not a sufficient punishment for the alleged offence.

The court also modified the verdict for Alessio and reduced his ban from eight months to six. Players Simone Pepe and Leonardo Bonucci were cleared of any involvement for a second time.

Montreal Impact striker Marco Di Vaio was also acquitted, but Lecce's relegation from Serie B to the Lega Pro was upheld.

Speaking on Tuesday, Conte had said he was confident that he would be cleared by the court and his ban overturned, saying: "I listened to my lawyers and, from what I've heard, they are very calm and confident that, against Parma, I will return to the bench."

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