LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) – Romanian club FC Timisoara is trying to regain its place in the Champions League and its country's top division at sport's highest court.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport said Friday it will hear Timisoara challenge UEFA and the Romanian Football Federation next week, and give urgent rulings within days.
Timisoara finished as the league's runner-up in May, but was later relegated after failing the federation's financial tests to get a licence for next season.
Without a licence from a national federation, UEFA bars teams from playing in the Champions League.
UEFA has given Timisoara's entry to third-placed Vaslui for the third qualifying-round draw which is conducted next Friday.
First-leg matches in the third qualifying round are scheduled to be played July 26-27 - giving UEFA time to restore Timisoara if the club wins its appeal.
CAS said the same panel will hear cases next Wednesday and Thursday involving Timisoara and two more Romanian clubs that have been denied a place in the top division.
Bihor Oradea and Gloria Bistrita have also challenged the Romanian federation's rejection of their licenses.
The court aims to give verdicts to all three clubs before the Romanian league season kicks off on July 22, potentially revising the 18-team lineup.
The chaotic offseason in Romania also saw 2009 champion Unirea Urziceni disband after being relegated.
Just 18 months earlier, Unirea had played with Europe's elite clubs in the Champions League and earned millions of euros (dollars) in prize money from UEFA.
Romanian title winner Otelul Galati gets direct entry into the 32-team Champions League group stage.