Thursday January 17 2013
Napoli await appeal verdict

Napoli’s lawyers are hoping Paolo Cannavaro and Gianluca Grava will be “completely cleared” of match-fixing charges, as the appeal verdict is expected this evening.

The club was docked two points and fined €70,000 by the Disciplinary Commission, while ex-third choice goalkeeper Matteo Gianello was banned for three years and three months.

He claimed that he had offered a potential fix to Cannavaro and Grava for the Sampdoria-Napoli match in May 2010, but that the pair turned him down point-blank.

The two teammates were banned for six months for failing to report the attempted fix to authorities, but insisted they had never even been approached.

“We are pleased that the prosecutor Stefano Palazzi pointed out in his arraignment that his original request was for a one-point penalty,” Napoli’s lawyer Mattia Grassani told Radio Marte.

“The request was exceeded by the Disciplinary Commission, which is a very rare occurrence. We aim for the club to be completely cleared, as reducing the penalty would be a compromise that does not interest us.

“We aim to rehabilitate Cannavaro and Grava. Our case is to dismantle that of the Disciplinary Commission. If Gianello is not credible, how can such a heavy judgment be passed down based only on the reconstruction of the police official? There is no other evidence.”

Gianello changed his story several times during the original trial, adjusting both the time and place he said he approached Cannavaro and Grava, but was still considered “credible” by the authorities.