The Football League has once again banned Massimo Cellino from owning Leeds United, and has directed the Italian businessman to resign within 28 days.
Cellino was previously disqualified from owning the Championship club in March after failing the Football League’s Owners’ and Directors’ Test due to his conviction for a tax offence in Italy.
The eccentric owner successfully appealed the judgement, to complete the takeover of Leeds for around £11m in April. But the Football League’s board of directors has uncovered new information relating to Cellino’s tax offence which has led it to re-impose the initial ruling.
Since the takeover Leeds have enjoyed mixed success under the trigger-happy owner who has already sacked three managers. The Yorkshire club are currently in 15th place in the second tier of English football.
After Cellino was cleared to take over Leeds by the Professional Conduct Committee (PCC) in April, Tim Kerr QC said he was satisfied that “what he was convicted of was not conduct which would reasonably be considered to be dishonest”.
However, Kerr added that: “If the reasoned ruling of the court in Cagliari discloses that the conduct of Mr Cellino was such that it would be reasonably considered dishonest, he would become subject to a Disqualifying Condition.”
The Football League board has since acquired full details of the Italian courts’ judgement against Cellino which has led it to disqualify him.
Cellino has 14 days to appeal to the PCC once again.