NYON: Marseille have been fined €3m by UEFA for breaching financial fair play regulations.

The French club, owned now by American businessman Frank McCourt, will thus continue in next season’s Champions League but will forfeit 15pc of its European competition prize money over the next two seasons. They also  incurred a two-player squad cut from 25 to 23 for the next three seasons.

The decision will come overall, as a huge relief, since Marseille’s place in the group stage of next season’s Champions League is worth millions of euro. This is more important than ever after the financial hit of the coronavirus pandemic.

André Villas-Boas’s team were in second place behind Paris Saint-Germain when the French league was ended early on government orders.

The latest sanctions replace a settlement Marseille agreed with UEFA last year for earlier FFP breaches which cost the club an initial €2m. Marseille had agreed not to exceed a loss of €30m this season, and limit the ratio of player salaries compared to overall revenue.