'I could not defend myself!' - Ex-Juventus president Andrea Agnelli speaks out after resigning amid police investigation into financial scandal
- Agnelli speaks out amid investigation
- Italian giants docked 15 points for "financial irregularities"
- Agnelli resigned in November over the scandal
WHAT HAPPENED? Andreas Agnelli has spoken out about Juventus' ongoing financial scandal and the factors behind his resignation as club president. The businessman is currently being investigated by Italian police over a club crisis that caused him to receive a two-year ban from football.
WHAT THEY SAID: "The suspension was imposed on me by the Italian FA after studying the Justice Department investigation. But I was not heard and could not defend myself," said Agnelli to De Telegraaf. "I resigned as president of Juventus because of a criminal investigation that concerns me personally. I cannot say much about this because the case is ongoing.
"The first preliminary hearing is on March 27, that’s when it will be decided whether the case stops or not," he continued. "I don't want Juventus to carry this burden for so long. A new board that has nothing to do with the charges can better represent the club. Then I am free to defend myself in court against any accusation."
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Juventus' season has been derailed by off-the-field issues, with a number of directors banned from holding office due to alleged "false accounting" and "financial irregularities". An ongoing criminal investigation relates largely to 'plusvalenza', or capital gains - essentially meaning the profit made on a transfer.
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WHAT NEXT FOR JUVENTUS? The club's 15-point deduction means that their hopes of winning Serie A have been crushed, while even securing Champions League qualification remains a big ask. Their next match is a huge derby against local rivals Torino on Tuesday. Meanwhile, the criminal investigation goes on behind the scenes.