Neuchatel fail to win back Swiss league licence

Neuchatel Xamax failed to win back their Swiss Super League licence on Thursday ahead of the restart of the season on February 4 after two courts ruled against the Russian-owned club, the country's Football League (SFL) said.

The club were stripped of their license on January 18 less than a year after being taken over by Russian businessman Bulat Chagaev (pictured, left) with the SFL saying Neuchatel were suspected of falsifying a bank document produced as a financial guarantee last year.

The club had demanded provisionary measures against the SFL decision in two courts, saying the league had no authority to take such a decision.

"The commercial tribunal and the regional tribunal (in Berne) have turned down Neuchatel Xamax' demands for provisional measures," the SFL said in a statement.

Neuchatel already had eight points deducted for irregularities in the payment of social security contributions and players' wages.

Chagaev, a businessman who hails from the volatile region of Chechnya, bought the club in May saying he wanted to take Neuchatel into the Champions League.

He has since sacked four coaches, faced a boycott by fans and fired several players.

He also sacked the entire administrative staff, leaving the club unable to print tickets for the opening game of the season, and parted company with all of the club's sponsors.

Chagaev has in turn accused the media of persecuting him because of his nationality.


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