The Principality club have been slapped with the punishment after crowd trouble
AS Monaco have been given a harder task to challenge for the Ligue 1 title when they return to the French top tier in 2013/14, after being handed a points deduction by the league authorities.
Despite the club being embroiled in a tax row with most of the other clubs in the top flight of France, the two-point deficit Monaco will start with is actually for crowd trouble last campaign.
The total ban is three points but one of those is suspended and a match at the Stade Louis II will be played behind closed doors to punish the fans.
This has come about after supporters used pyrotechnics within the stadium and invaded the pitch following Monaco’s 2-1 victory over Le Mans – a result that saw the Principality club gain promotion back to Ligue 1 after a two-year absence.
It comes as further controversy to the super-rich club, who have been grabbing the sports headlines in France with their big money transfer dealings.
So far, using Russian billionaire owner Dymitry Rybolovlev’s vast wealth, Monaco have acquired Radamel Falcao from Atletico Madrid for £50m, plus FC Porto duo Joao Moutinho and James Rodriguez for a combined fee of £60m.
The minimal tax payments required to make by law in the city makes coming to the club an attractive prospect for new players, but other sides in the league – who operate within France’s comparatively high tax bracket – believe Monaco have an unfair advantage.
As yet the tax issue has not been resolved, but Europe’s latest big spenders will certainly be hoping they’re not slapped with any further points deductions.