Serie A’s Juventus have been deducted 15 points for the current season by an Italian football court investigating the club's transfer dealings, leaving the country's most successful team marooned in mid-table.
The ruling, which also dealt a blow to the club's reputation, is tougher than a nine-point deduction a soccer prosecutor had requested earlier on Friday during a hearing looking at the way Juventus and a number of other teams dealt with player exchange deals.
With 20 games left to play this season, Juve were third in Serie A with 37 points, 10 behind leaders Napoli. The deduction pushes them down into 10th place, outside the qualifying spots for lucrative European competition.
In a late night statement, the court also imposed bans from holding office in Italian soccer on 11 past and present Juventus directors.
Juventus said it would appeal to the country's Sport Guarantee Board once the reasons for the ruling were published. They have denied wrongdoing and said their accounting was in line with industry standards.
Juventus is the most titled club in Italy, having won 36 official league titles, 14 domestic cups, and nine domestic Super Cups. The side from Turin also has two Champions’ League titles under its belt and won the UEFA Cup three times, among other accolades.