Luis Suarez, the Uruguayan striker caught biting an opponent, has failed in his appeal to have a four-month ban from soccer reduced but can return to practice with his Spanish professional team immediately.
The ruling by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, issued Thursday, means Suarez will not be eligible to play for Barcelona until late October.
"The CAS panel found that the sanctions imposed on the player were generally proportionate to the offense committed," the ruling stated.
Suarez bit Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini on the shoulder during a World Cup match in late June. It marked the third time he had exhibited such behavior.
FIFA suspended him for nine international matches, forcing him to miss the remainder of Cup play. The additional four-month ban prohibited him from participating in any official soccer activities or so much as stepping foot in a stadium.
"The stadium ban and the ban from 'any football-related activity' were excessive given that such measures are not appropriate to sanction the offense committed by the player and would still have an impact on his activity after the end of the suspension," the court ruled.
Since the incident, the troubled star has been transferred to Barcelona from Liverpool in the English Premier League. He traveled to Lausanne, Switzerland, to plead his case before the CAS panel last week.