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Juventus to appeal after Conte's ban upheld

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ROME (AP) -Juventus will appeal to Italy's sports arbitration panel after coach Antonio Conte's 10-month ban for his role in the match-fixing scandal was upheld Wednesday by the Italian football federation.

"I am confident that CONI's justice system, to which we will urgently appeal, know how to remedy this deep injustice," Juventus president Andrea Agnelli said.

The federation's disciplinary committee confirmed the guilty finding for failing to report match-fixing in Albinoleffe's match against Siena during the 2010-11 season, when Conte was coach of then-Serie B team Siena. It threw out the guilty finding in a second game that season, but maintained the 10-month sentence.

"For several months I have observed this situation with incredulity, accompanied by a growing sense of bafflement," Agnelli said. "It's a sporting justice that seems more and more like a witch hunt. Today it's gone too far."

Assistant coach Angelo Alessi, who also served under Conte at Siena, had his ban reduced from eight months to six.

Conte, who led Juventus to the Serie A title last season, will be allowed to continue training during the week but can have no contact with the team in matches. Massimo Carrera, who led Juve to the Italian Super Cup and the Berlusconi trophy, will continue to stand in for Conte.

The committee rejected the appeals of prosecutor Stefano Palazzi against Juventus players Leonardo Bonucci and Simone Pepe, Siena's Nicola Belmonte and Torino's Salvatore Masiello, who were all cleared of any wrongdoing in Udinese's match against Bari in May 2010.

Former Bologna striker Marco Di Vaio also remains unpunished.

Siena player Emanuele Pesoli has had his appeal against a three-year suspension rejected. Pesoli chained himself to the gate of the federation's headquarters in Rome and went on hunger strike in protest at the ban last week.

Lecce also had its appeal rejected and remains excluded from Serie B, but Grosseto will start next season in the second division after its appeal was upheld along with that of the club president against his five-year suspension.

Novara has had its two-point deduction reduced to one point and a ?20,000 ($24,900) fine.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
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