Suspended UEFA president Michel Platini speaks to the media as he arrives to attend his appeal against a eight year ban from football on February 15, 2016 at the FIFA headquarters in Zurich.AFP / MICHAEL BUHOLZER
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The fallen head of European football, Michel Platini, faced a FIFA appeals committee Monday in a bid to clear his name and overturn an eight-year ban from the sport for ethics violations.In December, FIFA judges ruled that a mysterious 2 million Swiss franc ($2 million) Platini received from Sepp Blatter in 2011 violated the world body's ethics guidelines and that both men abused their positions.Both men, once the most powerful figures in world football, have insisted that the payment was part of a legitimate oral contract reportedly for consulting work performed by Platini a decade earlier.Platini had been the favorite to win FIFA's Feb. 26 presidential vote but the December ruling leveled the final blow to his hopes of succeeding Blatter.Platini Monday seemed to dismiss suggestions that Blatter was responsible for his troubles.
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