(Reuters) - Karpaty have been expelled from the Ukrainian Premier League after failing to turn up for two games in the championship last week, the country’s Football Association (UAF) said on Thursday.
Karpaty, one of Ukraine’s most popular clubs after the two biggest teams Dynamo Kyiv and Shakhtar Donetsk, failed to appear for two matches against Mariupol due to financial difficulties.
Karpaty, based in Lviv — the largest city in western Ukraine — won the Soviet Cup in 1969 and have competed in European club competitions on several occasions.
The UAF said it would allow Karpaty’s previous results to stand but their remaining games will be recorded as 3-0 losses.
It is still not clear if cash-strapped Karpaty will be allowed to play in the ex-Soviet Republic’s second tier next season or should start in a lower division.
“The club is not deprived of its professional status and has the right to apply for certification to participate in the First League championship (second tier),” the UAF Control and Disciplinary Committee’s general secretary Igor Grishchenko said.
“Then the UAF’s Certification Committee will consider whether Karpaty meet the criteria or not, and make a decision.”
Reporting by Angel Krasimirov; Editing by Ken Ferris