Photo: Luis Suarez
The Court of Arbitration for Sport has summoned Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez, currently serving a four-month ban from all soccer-related activities, to a hearing on Aug. 8.
Sources familiar with the case told Efe that CAS will apply its fast-track procedure and should rule on Suarez’s appeal against his suspension in mid-August.
The CAS has summoned Suarez and his attorneys to appear before the arbitration body’s headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland.
A week ago, TAS said it would hold an “express” hearing and decide on Suarez’s appeal during the second week of August. The defense has requested that the CAS apply cautionary measures while the case is under review.
The 27-year-old star striker, who was signed by FC Barcelona from Liverpool F.C. after FIFA’s Disciplinary Committee handed down the sanction, was suspended on June 26 for biting Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini during a World Cup round-robin match two days earlier in the northeastern Brazilian city of Natal.
As part of the ruling, Suarez was barred from Uruguay’s next nine competitive matches, the first of which was a June 28 loss to Colombia in the World Cup knockout stage.
Earlier this month, FIFA’s Appeal Committee rejected a challenge filed by Suarez and Uruguay’s soccer federation against FIFA’s ruling, leaving the CAS route as the final option for reducing the player’s suspension.
Because of the ban, Suarez - the Spanish-league powerhouse’s biggest signing this offseason - has not been officially presented at Camp Nou.
If the CAS applies cautionary measures while studying the case, Suarez could return to training in the second half of August.
Barcelona’s first match of the 2014-2015 Spanish-league season is scheduled for the weekend of Aug. 23-24.
If Suarez’s sanction is not reduced, his first La Liga match could be Barcelona’s clash with arch-rival Real Madrid in late October, provided the match is scheduled for Sunday, Oct. 26, and not Oct. 25, the final day of his four-month ban.