KEIR RADNEDGE REPORTS: French club Reims, twice Champions Cup finalists in the 1950s, have been awarded  €4.78m in damages against the national association by a local court in Châlons-en-Champagne for a wrongful relegation order.

The court action appears to breach national and international regulations which prohibit football disputes being processed in civil courts.

Reims’ complaint concerns the 2015-2016 season. The club ended the Ligue 1 season in 18th place which, on the face of it, meant automatic demotion to the second tier.

However Reims claimed that SC Bastia, who finished 10th, should have gone down instead because of the Corsican club’s financial collapse.

Bastia were punished ‘only’ with a transfer ban by the Direction Nationale du Contrôle de Gestion which oversees professional football accounting for the federation and the league.

Subsequently, in 2017, Bastia were declared bankrupt and ordered down to the third division.

In January 2019 Reims claimed €21m in damages. This was reduced by the court to €4.78m.

Reims president Jean-Pierre Caillot said: “The amount is still significant, especially given the current context. The court ruled that we were right. The federation can to appeal so we will see what happens next but we are satisfied with this judgment. ”