SPURS were rocked last night after the director of football Fabio Paratici was handed a two-and-a-half YEAR ban from the game by an Italian court.
Over three seasons at Juventus, Paratici was found guilty of orchestrating a transfer scam.
And the plot cost the Italian giants a massive 15-point penalty, effectively ending their season.
The shocking discovery means that the FA will most likely be asked to carry out the suspension by its Italian counterparts, leaving Spurs in the lurch and chairman Daniel Levy scrambling to fill a huge void at the club’s top.
SunSport comprehends Wembley officials are unsure whether the sanction must be applied automatically or if they must wait for direction from Fifa.
However, most associations accept the disciplinary decisions of their fellow governing bodies, and it is expected that Paratici will appeal the verdict – of the Federal Appeals Court.
Over three seasons, Juventus was accused of inflating transfer fees in transactions with other Italian clubs in order to generate millions of pounds in “capital gains” for tax purposes.
Juve was accused of gaming the system in order to increase their market spending power.
In May, Juve and eight other clubs, including Sampdoria, Genoa, and Parma, were found not guilty.
However, the verdict was appealed to the Federal Appeals Court, and at yesterday’s hearing, Italian FA prosecutors requested that the case be reheard and that serious sanctions be imposed.
Giuseppe Chine, the prosecutor’s lawyer, had only requested a nine-point penalty.
Instead, the “Old Lady” were robbed of 15 points, dropping them from third to 11th in Serie A and 12 points behind Lazio for the fourth and final Champions League spot.
Chine, acting on behalf of the FA, also sought lengthy bans for Paratici, as well as the dismissal of Juve board members Andrea Agnelli and Pavel Nedved, as well as fines totaling £1 million for the clubs involved in the scheme.
Juventus lawyer Maurizio Bellacosa argued the appeal was “inadmissible”, pointing to the legal principle that “nobody can be prosecuted or criminally convicted of an offence for which they have already been acquitted”.
The Court, however, rejected that argument, even though it ruled that sanctions should only apply to Juventus and its officials and not to the other clubs.
The harshest punishment was meted out to Paratici, 50, who joined Spurs 18 months ago to take charge of recruitment in N17.
Agnelli, who stepped down as Juve President this week, and chief executive Maurizio Arrivabene, who was previously the Principal of the Ferrari F1 team, were both sentenced to two years in prison.
Nedved, who also left the club this week, and a number of club officials have been suspended from football for eight months.
The findings are also likely to have more serious consequences for Juventus, with Uefa preparing to launch an investigation into the financial dealings, which could result in a lengthy European ban.