Why Arthur faces possible ban over Juventus scandal

Arthur Melo has only played one game for Liverpool
Arthur Melo has only played one game for Liverpool / Robbie Jay Barratt - AMA/GettyImages

Liverpool midfielder Arthur, currently on a season-long loan from Juventus, could face a potential ban owing to the financial scandal that has engulfed his parent club.

Italian journalist Paolo Zillani has shared images of documents which purport to show ‘salary manoeuvres’ for 23 players across the 2019/20 and 2020/21 seasons.

It is alleged that the players named on the document, which also includes Cristiano Ronaldo, Paulo Dybala, Gianluigi Buffon and Aaron Ramsey, adhered to the ‘fake waiver’ of some wages that allowed Juve to make large financial losses ‘disappear from the balance sheet’.

Zillani tweeted that all named players face a one-month ban for being complicit.

The suggestion is that the squad were made aware of the plans by captain Giorgio Chiellini via WhatsApp messages, advising not to mention to journalists – messages which Matthijs de Ligt and Mattia De Sciglio are said to have passed on to magistrates. Every player involved is said to have admitted when question by investigators what had happened.

Any bans are not expected to be enforced outside Italy, which is unlikely to affect Arthur.

The Brazilian has also been nursing a long-term injury since September and has made only one first-team appearance for Liverpool since joining the club.

Juventus have been deducted 15 points in Serie A as punishment for their financial irregularities, while as many as 11 directors, either currently or formerly holding positions at the club, have been handed bans of varying lengths by Italian authorities.