Liverpool defender Mamadou Sakho has been cleared by a UEFA board after being suspended 30 days in an anti-doping probe in April.
Sakho’s suspension had stemmed from an alleged anti-doping violation following Liverpool’s Europa League match against Manchester United in March, but UEFA have now dismissed the charges against him.
The 26-year-old is now free to play for Liverpool ahead of the upcoming Premier League season after he returned to preseason training last Saturday.
Sakho’s 30-day suspension ended on May 28. He missed Liverpool’s Europa League final defeat to Sevilla and was not part of France’s squad for Euro 2016.
A UEFA statement on Friday said: “The proceedings against Mr. Sakho related to a violation of the UEFA Anti-Doping Regulations after the player failed a doping test at the above-mentioned match. Following a hearing with the lawyers of the player and experts of the WADA-accredited laboratories on this case, the CEDB has decided to dismiss the case.”
The case was heard by the UEFA’s independent Control, Ethics and Disciplinary Body (CEDB) on Thursday.
It was reported in May that UEFA had opted not to extend the suspension and that the governing body was investigating whether the substance for which Sakho tested positive should even be on the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA) banned list.
Throughout the process, the centre-back maintained he had not done anything wrong and that stance has now been justified.
“I am happy that this is finally over. It’s been a difficult time for me but I knew I had done nothing wrong,” he said in a statement. “I am looking forward to getting back in the team and playing again.”
Liverpool expressed their satisfaction the saga was now over.
“Liverpool Football Club welcomes today’s decision from UEFA to dismiss the case against Mamadou Sakho, confirming that he did not commit any doping violation,” a statement read. “We are pleased for Mamadou that he can now resume his playing career.”