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By ESPN Staff
Sep 7, 2006

Gil Vicente relegation confirmed by Portuguese league

LISBON, Sept 7 (Reuters) - The Portuguese Football League has confirmed Gil Vicente's relegation to the second division, allowing the Premier League to return to normal this weekend.

The League decision follows a legal row sparked by Gil Vicente's move to challenge in a civil court the suspension of Angolan player Mateus by Portuguese soccer authorities.

Gil Vicente's general assembly is expected to meet later on Thursday to decide whether to withdraw their appeal in the civil court.

In a statement late on Wednesday, the League said the Portuguese Soccer Federation (FPF) had decided to invoke a special measure in the public interest which annuls the civil court's decision.

Gil Vicente's decision to go to a civil court contravened League and FIFA rules.

The club were relegated to the second division last season after the FPF said Gil Vicente had broken rules concerning the signing of amateur player Mateus.

Belenenses will replace Gil Vicente.

FIFA had given the FPF until Sept. 14 to resolve the row or face suspension from all international tournaments.