Uefa spares Malaga 2nd year of European ban

The second season of a two-year suspension on Malaga competing in European competition has been lifted by UEFA after the Spanish club proved they have no outstanding debts to other clubs, employees or the tax authorities.

Uefa spares Malaga 2nd year of European ban
Malaga made it to the quarter-finals in their first ever participation in the Champions League this season. Photo: Patrick Stollarz/AFP

Malaga made it to the quarter-finals in their first ever participation in the Champions League this season, but are currently banned from competing in Europe next season should they qualify as UEFA found in December they were in breach of European football governing body's new financial fair play rules.

They were given until March 31 to show it had cleared those overdue debts to avoid being banned for another season.

However, the club confirmed on Thursday that UEFA had now accepted they have complied with those requirements.

"Malaga football club has today received communication from UEFA that its financial control committee has confirmed that, after an analysis of the situation of the Martiricos club on 31 March, 2013, it leaves without effect the second conditional year of suspension against the Andalusian club," said a statement on the club's website.

The club are also appealing the initial decision taken by UEFA to the Court of Arbitration(CAS) for Sport to get the entire ban overturned and have been awarded a licence from the Spanish Football Federation to play in Europe next season should that appeal be successful.

"This decision and the awarding of the licence ratify what the club already expressed when our compliance was put in doubt," said Chief Executive Officer Vicente Casado.

"We have worked and we will continue to do so because we are very optimistic looking to the future."

A decision from the CAS is expected to be announced on June 4.

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Malaga to trial Spain’s first self-driving bus

Spain’s first self-driving bus will begin to take public passengers from this Saturday, February 20th.

Malaga to trial Spain's first self-driving bus
Image: Largeroliker / WikiCommons

Created as part of the AutoMOST R + D + I project in participation with Avanza bus company and Malaga City Council, the 12-metre electric bus features autonomous driving technology and will be a revolutionary addition to the transport system.

The mayor of Malaga, Francisco de la Torre, companied by the president of the Port of Malaga Authority, Carlos Rubio, and the general director of Avanza, Valentin Alonso were the first to ride in this driverless bus.

Mayor de la Torre said “Malaga has been a pioneer in creating ways to improve life in the city”. “We were also the first city to implement contactless cards on buses,” he added.

The self-driving bus is the first of its kind to circulate in real traffic and will be in operation on line 90 from the Maritime Station in the port area to the Paseo del Parque in the front of the City Hall.

Malaga will become the first European city to implement this new autonomous driving technology in a bus, which is also environmentally friendly, run fully on electricity and which produces zero emissions.

The city council said in a statement that this move reinforces Malaga’s commitment to sustainable mobility and the use of new technologies adapted to transport.

In previous projects, self-driving tests have only been carried out using smaller vehicles, not the standard 12-metre buses that are in daily circulation around the city.

12-metre buses are the world standard, so in theory it will be possible to implement this same type of technology in other models of the same size around the world.

In order for the technology to work, Malaga City Council has invested 180,000 euros in smart traffic lights, which communicate with the bus telling it when to go and stop.

Initially the self-driving bus will run for three weeks, but the traffic lights will remain in place, allowing for the implementation of other self-driving systems in the future, such as driverless cars.

For the next three weeks, residents can ride the self-driving bus completely free of charge. It will operate from Saturday February 20th to March 13th, from Tuesdays to Saturdays 9:30am to 2:30pm.

You can book a ticket on the bus in advance by visiting