Luis Suarez’s four-month ban should be halved and the Uruguayan allowed to train with Barcelona during his suspension, his legal team is set to tell the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) on Friday.
The striker is currently prohibited from engaging in all football-related activity for biting Italy’s Giorgio Chiellini during a World Cup Group D match in Natal in June.
However, his lawyers are on the way to Lausanne, where CAS will hear an appeal into the ban imposed by Fifa, and they are confident they will be able to argue a strong case for a reduction in Suarez’s punishment.
“It would be more logical to reduce the sanction by a few months than to reduce the ban concerning international games, because legally it’s easier to contend against the terms of the suspension that forbid him from training and from being at the club, because they violate fundamental rights,” said Alejandro Balbi, who is both Suarez’s adviser and a member of the Uruguayan FA’s executive committee.
“The nine-match ban for Uruguay is more a question of the level of the punishment,”
Balbi and his team are expected to petition for a 50 per cent reduction of the player’s domestic ban, which would allow Suarez to return to action on August 26.
That would mean the ex-Liverpool star missing only Barcelona’s opener against Elche and being available for the first time for the trip to Villarreal on August 31.
Suarez has yet to be officially unveiled as a Barca player since his €88m move from Liverpool as a result of his far-reaching suspension.