Tottenham is out of Europe after being forced to forfeit its final UEFA Europa Conference League group stage game against Stade Rennes, with the fixture initially called off due to a COVID-19 outbreak in the Spurs camp.
Antonio Conte’s side had been due to host the Ligue 1 opponent on Dec. 9, but cancelled the game after a number of players and coaches contracted coronavirus.
Rennes expressed its disappointment at the time at seeing the game postponed on such short notice, and European football’s governing body has now awarded them a 3-0 victory as no rearranged date can be set.
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A statement from UEFA read: “Following several positive cases of COVID-19 that were identified from players and staff of Tottenham Hotspur, the 2021/22 UEFA Europa Conference League group stage match between Spurs and Stade Rennais could not be played.
“Based on the UEFA Disciplinary Regulations and given the urgent circumstances of the matter, the ad-hoc chairman of the Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body referred the case to the Appeals Body. The chairman took the following decision:
“To declare the 2021/22 UEFA Europa Conference League group stage match between Tottenham Hotspur and Stade Rennais, as forfeited by Spurs who is therefore deemed to have lost the match 0-3.”
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Spurs eliminated from Europa Conference League
The result means Spurs finish third in Group G, ending their continental commitments for 2021-22 with no spot earned in the Europa Conference League knockout round playoffs.
Group G final standings
|1. Stade Rennais (X)||14||6||4||0||2||13||7||+6|
|2. Vitesse (X)||10||6||3||2||1||12||9||+3|
Dutch side Vitesse will move forward to that playoff stage, where it will face Austrian club Rapid Vienna.
A win against Stade Rennais would have seen Tottenham catch Vitesse on points (10) and advance as the second-place team based on overall group goal difference given the head-to-head tiebreakers against the Dutch club were also deadlocked.
UEFA previously conducted its Conference League knockout playoff draw with both “Vitesse/Tottenham” pending the final decision by its appeals body.
Tottenham, which qualified for the Conference League by virtue of finishing in seventh place in last season’s Premier League, only collected seven points in the inaugural Conference League group stage. It can now focus its full attention on domestic matters.
Spurs are through to the quarterfinals of the Carabao Cup, with London rivals West Ham their next opponent in the competition on Wednesday, Dec. 22. They will also prepare to enter the FA Cup and chase down a possible top-four finish in the Premier League.