Former FIFA president Sepp Blatter and former UEFA president Michel Platini (WFI)

(WFI) Former FIFA president Sepp Blatter still cannot attend the FIFA Congress this Friday and get the send off he desires.

Blatter and former UEFA president Michel Platini saw their eight-year bans from world football reduced to just six years each on Wednesday by the FIFA appeals committee. The committee subsequently denied a request to extend the eight-year bans to lifetime sentences.

The bans will keep Blatter from attending the extraordinary congress on Feb. 26 where Blatter’s successor will be determined. The five men vying to take over as head of world football are Asian Football Confederation president Sheikh Salman, UEFA general secretary Gianni Infantino, former FIFA executives Prince Ali and Jerome Champagne and South African businessman Tokyo Sexwale.

To go along with the bans Platini will have to pay a fine of $80,000 while Blatter will owe FIFA $50,000. Each has 30 days to pay his fine.

The appeals committee says the bans were reduced because some “mitigating factors” were not taken into consideration by the adjudicatory committee.

“In this sense the Appeal Committee considered that Mr. Platini’s and Mr. Blatter’s activities and the services they had rendered to FIFA, UEFA and football in general over the years should deserve appropriate recognition as a mitigating factor.”

Blatter says he still plans on taking his appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Platini will likely do the same.

If upheld by CAS, the new six-year bans will come to a close on Oct. 8, 2021.

By INSIDER Kevin Nutley

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