Asser International Sports Law Blog

Our International Sports Law Diary
The Asser International Sports Law Centre is part of the T.M.C. Asser Instituut

International and European Sports Law – Monthly Report – July and August 2017. By Tomáš Grell

 Editor's note: This report compiles all relevant news, events and materials on International and European Sports Law based on the daily coverage provided on our twitter feed @Sportslaw_asser.


The Headlines

ISLJ Annual Conference on International Sports Law 

On 26 and 27 October 2017, the T.M.C. Asser Institute in The Hague will host the first ever ISLJ Annual International Sports Law Conference. This year's edition will feature panels on the Court of Arbitration for Sport, the world anti-doping system, the FIFA transfer regulations, human rights and sports, the labour rights of athletes, and EU law and sport. We will also welcome the following distinguished keynote speakers:

  • Miguel Maduro, former Advocate General at the European Court of Justice and former head of the FIFA's Governance Committee;
  • Michael Beloff QC, English barrister known as one of the 'Godfathers' of sports law;
  • Stephen Weatherill, Professor at Oxford University and a scholarly authority on EU law and sport;
  • Richard McLaren, CAS Arbitrator, sports law scholar and former head of the World Anti-Doping Agency's investigation into the Russian doping scandal.

You will find all the necessary information related to the conference here. Do not forget to register as soon as possible if you want to secure a place on the international sports law pitch! [Please note that we have a limited amount of seats available, which will be attributed on a 'first come, first served' basis.]

FC Red Bull Salzburg and RB Leipzig given the green light to participate in the 2017/2018 UEFA Champions League

In July, UEFA published the decision on eligibility of FC Red Bull Salzburg and RB Leipzig to participate in the 2017/2018 edition of the UEFA Champions League, handed down by the Adjudicatory Chamber of the UEFA Club Financial Control Body ('CFCB') on 16 June 2017. Having examined the clubs' submissions and, in particular, taking note of multiple personal and other changes made by FC Red Bull Salzburg, the CFCB Adjudicatory Chamber concluded that the company Red Bull did not have a decisive influence over the Austrian club in the sense of Article 5.01(c)(iv) of the UEFA Champions League Regulations 2015-2018 Cycle, 2017/2018 Season. Simultaneously, the CFCB Adjudicatory Chamber held that FC Red Bull Salzburg was not able to exercise by any means a decisive influence in the decision-making of RB Leipzig (or vice versa) at the time when the decision in question was delivered. In the end, both clubs were given the green light to participate in the 2017/2018 edition of the UEFA Champions League as the CFCB Adjudicatory Chamber believed it would not threaten the integrity of the UEFA's flagship club competition.


The CAS award in International Ski Federation v. Therese Johaug and the Norwegian Olympic and Paralympic Committee and Confederation of Sports

On 22 August 2017, the CAS published its award rendered in the dispute featuring the International Ski Federation, the Norwegian cross-country skier Therese Johaug and the Norwegian Olympic and Paralympic Committee and Confederations of Sports ('NIF'). By way of reminder, the seven-time world champion tested positive for Clostebol in September 2016. Consequently, the NIF Adjudication Committee imposed a 13-month period of ineligibility on Johaug, effective as of 18 October 2016. Not satisfied with the length of the sanction, the International Ski Federation filed an appeal with the CAS on 6 March 2017, asking the latter to lengthen Johaug's ban to at least 16 months. Despite the Norwegian's otherwise clean anti-doping record, the CAS eventually sided with the International Ski Federation and lengthened Johaug's ban to 18 months, effective as of 18 October 2016. As a result, she will now miss the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang.


Sara Errani banned from professional tennis for two months

The Italian female tennis player Sara Errani is currently serving a two-month ban imposed on her by an Independent Tribunal appointed under Article 8.1 of the 2017 Tennis Anti-Doping Programme. This sanction is a direct consequence of an out-of-competition doping control test which took place on 16 February 2017 and revealed the presence of Letrozole in the body of the former French Open finalist. Apart from not being eligible to enter any tournament before 3 October 2017, Errani is also obliged to return prize money she earned at events played during the period between 16 February 2017 and 7 June 2017, given that all her results achieved during the said period were disqualified. It should be noted, however, that the Italian Anti-Doping Agency reportedly petitioned the CAS to lengthen Errani's ban, and thus it will be the CAS that will have the final word on the matter.


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