Samson Siasia will no longer appear before the Court of Arbitration for Sports (CAS) on March 19 following the outbreak of coronavirus, a widespread global epidemic.
The embroiled former Super Eagles coach had been banned by FIFA from all football activities on the grounds of bribery and match-fixing in August 2019 but his lawyers did file an appeal to CAS.
The appeal needed an estimated sum of 91 million naira for CAS to hear out Siasia which led to the Olympic Silver-winning coach soliciting for help from Nigerians.
The former Super Eagles star and FIFA alongside their witnesses were expected to be in Zurich for the hearing on Thursday.
However, with the increasing spread of coronavirus around the globe, the sports dispute settling body has canceled all “in-hearings” that cannot be done via live videos until May.
“CAS will not host any in-person hearing before 1 May 2020, at the earliest. Depending on the circumstances of each individual case, the arbitrators and parties are encouraged to conduct hearings by video-conference or to cancel them (final award on the basis of written submissions.
“If such measures are not possible or appropriate, the hearings must be postponed until May 2020 or later. Depending on the evolution of the Covid-19 outbreak, the prohibition of in-person hearings may be extended.” A statement from CAS read.
Siasia’s fate will be determined whenever the virus can be curbed as the ruling of CAS will determine his future in football.
FIFA had also slammed a fine of FIFA also slammed a fine of $51,000 on Siasia but the former Nigeria U20/23 gaffer believes his defense can upturn the ban.
“I am sure of victory if only I can afford the money to defend myself. Some people don’t believe me because of what FIFA has said, but FIFA is run by human beings.” Siasia said in an interview with the Vanguard.
It is yet to be determined if the 52-year-old has gotten enough financial support for the hearing.