Paris Saint-Germain will be travelling to London without their full-back Serge Aurier for the Champions League fixture against us on Wednesday.
The French champions today released a statement confirming that Aurier has been denied a visa to enter the Great Britain due to his ongoing trial.
The Ivory Coast international was sentenced to two months in prison for elbowing a police officer after he was stopped by the police for a breath test. He was also fined €600, but his prison time was later reduced to a ‘convertible’ sentence which means he is likely to do community service rather spend time in prison.
However, the French champions are not at all happy with the latest development and have blamed the British authorities for the decision.
Aurier is currently appealing the conviction and has been allowed to play football in France.
“Due to a sudden about-face by the British authorities, Serge Aurier has not been allowed to travel with PSG squad for the clash away to Arsenal,” PSG said in a statement.
“After an initial application on October 18, complete with all the necessary documents, the British authorities had originally granted Paris Saint-Germain’s Côte d’Ivoire international an entry visa to the UK on October 21.
“However, on November 16, his visa was finally revoked by the British Ministry of the Interior, who justified their about-face by citing Aurier’s conviction on September 30, 2016.”
“Paris Saint-Germain had, in all transparency, informed the British authorities of this conviction, as well as Aurier’s appeal against this decision (and the legal suspension of the ruling) from the outset.
“The club has argued several times that since the player has launched a legal appeal against the criminal ruling, he is therefore entitled to the presumption of innocence, as any other person exercising their right to appeal.
“Paris Saint-Germain strongly regrets that the presumption of innocence has not influenced Britain’s decision. On several occasions, Uefa has also transmitted its total support of Paris Saint-Germain to the British authorities regarding this case, in order to preserve the integrity of its competitions.
PSG also called out the British authorities for taking a lax attitude in the process.
“The club also deplores that the final decision of the British authorities was only communicated at 14:00 CET on Tuesday, despite the club working for the last six days to find a solution to enable our player to travel with his teammates to London.
“In the face of this decision, albeit difficult to understand in respect to European law, Paris Saint-Germain, who had planned to travel to London with its strongest possible squad, invites its fans to be more united than ever, in support of their club.”
This certainly is a blow for PSG as Aurier is a critical player for them and he was certainly a nuisance for us in the reverse fixture in Paris.
The French champions will also be without Javier Pastore, Layvin Kurzawa and Adrien Rabiot.
Serge Aurier’s sudden unavailability means PSG’s squad has been confirmed with NO Aurier, Adrien Rabiot, Layvin Kurzawa or Javier Pastore.
— Jonathan Johnson (@Jon_LeGossip) November 22, 2016