Tottenham out of Europa Conference League after forfeiting Rennes match

Rennes have been awarded a 3-0 win after Spurs were unable to play the Group G fixture due to a Covid-19 outbreak

Jamie Braidwood
Monday 20 December 2021 10:34
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Conte ready to support whatever decisions are made to curb Covid spread

Tottenham have been knocked out of the Europa Conference League after Uefa ruled they forfeited their final group stage match against Rennes.

Spurs were unable to play the Group G tie, scheduled for December 9, after a Covid-19 outbreak in their first-team squad.

Antonio Conte’s side needed to beat the Ligue 1 team in order to advance to the knockout stages but Rennes have been awarded a 3-0 victory.

The result leaves Spurs third in the group, behind winners Rennes and Dutch side Vitesse Arnhem.

A statement from Uefa confirmed: “The Europa Conference League group stage match between Tottenham Hotspur and Stade Rennais, that was initially scheduled to be played on 9 December 2021, as forfeited by Tottenham Hotspur, who is therefore deemed to have lost the match 0-3 in accordance to the regulations of the Europa Conference League.”

Tottenham, who also saw Premier League fixtures against Brighton and Leicester postponed due to Covid-19 issues, had until December 31 to reschedule the Rennes match, as per Uefa regulations.

The club requested the Premier League to rearrange their visit to the King Power Stadium last Thursday to play their Europa Conference League match and had even offered to travel to France in order to fulfil the fixture.

But Spurs were unable to reach an agreement with either the Premier League or Uefa and it leaves them out of European competition this season.

Spurs, who qualified for the inaugural season of the Europa Conference League after finishing seventh in the Premier League last campaign, suffered damaging defeats to Vitesse and Slovenian side NS Mura to leave them on the brink of an early exit ahead of the Rennes tie.

Conte had previously stated his desire for Spurs to remain in the tournament and said his side had been treated unfairly by Uefa following the outbreak at their training ground.

“I think we deserve to play our chance against Rennes to go to the next group,” Conte said last week. “We don’t find a good solution between Uefa and Premier League, why Tottenham has to pay for this?

“It’s not fair we have to pay for a situation that isn’t our fault? I understand if we did something wrong but in this way, for the club, the players, the staff, it’s very difficult to understand what’s happening.

“We want to play the game. Tottenham deserves to play the game, to play the last game of this group.”

Tottenham’s exit from the tournament does ease their scheduling concerns, however, with Premier League fixtures against Burnley, Brighton and Leicester yet to be rearranged.

Their visit to Turn Moor was postponed earlier this month due to adverse weather.

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