Former Manchester City star Robinho given nine year sentence over sex assault

Robinho released a statement on his Instagram page stating that he had "already defended himself against the accusations, affirming that he did not participate in the episode" and that "all legal measures are being taken".

Robinho, 33, who now plays with Atl├ętico Mineiro in Brazil, pleaded not guilty via his lawyer and did not appear at any of the court hearings in northern Italy.

A Milan court ruled the 33-year-old former Manchester City forward took part in the gang rape of a 22-year-old Albanian woman with five other Brazilians in the city in 2013, according to reports in Italy.

Robinho was playing for the Rossoneri at the time. But the verdict is still on hold as the Italian justice system allows for several levels of appeal and wont make the sentence effective until after such proceedings - if he is still deemed to be culpable. Brazil does not extradite its own citizens when they are sentenced in other countries.

Robinho, who has 100 caps for Brazil, joined Manchester City from Real Madrid in 2008 as the first major signing of the Sheikh Mansour era.

He then went on loan to Brazilian side Santos, before joining Milan.

At the end of the season, he moved to AC Milan where he was joined by Zlatan Ibrahimovic and later Antonio Cassano en route to winning Serie A.

He is now back in Brazil with Atletico Mineiro.

Robinho had previously been accused of sexual assault while at City in 2009, but was later cleared.