Malaga sanctioned by UEFA

Malaga have impressed in their first season in the Champions League. Photo: PA

Spanish side Malaga have been banned from European competition for one season due to outstanding debts.

The club has also been threatened with a further year's European ban by UEFA unless they prove they have no debts to other clubs, players or the tax authorities.

Malaga are currently fourth in the Primera Division but have had huge struggles with financial problems.

The ban will be imposed if the club qualified for the Champions League or Europa League during any of the next four seasons.

UEFA says it will impose the additional ban unless Malaga provides the proof it has cleared its debts of 'overdue payables' by March 31. It has also fined the club 300,000 euros.

A UEFA statement said: "UEFA's club financial control body has taken its first decisions due to the presence of significant overdue payables.

"The club [Malaga] is excluded from participating in the next UEFA club competitions for which it would otherwise qualify for in the next four seasons."

Five other clubs face similar one-year bans during any of the next three seasons unless they can convince UEFA they have cleared the stipulated debts. They are Hadjuk Split and Osijek from Croatia, Rapid Bucharest and Dinamo Bucharest from Romania, and Partizan Belgrade from Serbia.