Michelle Froome: My husband will ride Tour - Tour de France 2018

Chris Froome on the final Tour de France podium in 2013 with Barnard Hinault Eddy Merckx and Miguel Indurain

Froome, who just recently won the Giro d'Italia, is expected to fight the ban, according to the report.

Froome is engulfed in a storm surrounding asthma medication salbutamol after returning an adverse urine sample at last year's La Vuelta, which showed he had double the permitted level after Stage 18.

The Team Sky rider has been engulfed by a doping scandal for several months, and ASO have moved to block Froome from attempting to claim his fourth yellow jersey in a row. Le Monde quoted a Team Sky spokesman saying "we are confident that Chris will be riding the Tour as we know he has done nothing wrong".

While the Kenyan-born and South African-schooled rider awaits the result into the Salbutamol case, he is technically still allowed to take part.

Sky immediately appealed to the French Olympic Committee, who will meet on Tuesday with a representative of either side and will deliver a binding verdict on Froome's participation on Wednesday.

The last time ASO took such action was in 2009, when it sought to exclude Tom Boonen from the Tour de France after the former world champion's third out-of-competition positive test for cocaine.

It has nevertheless left Team Sky insiders fearful of a negative reaction among fans at the race when Froome has been the target of abuse in the past.

It first took such measures in 1999 with Richard Virenque and the TVM team over the Festina doping affair, but they were cleared to take part by the International Cycling Union (UCI).

Froome would thereby join four other men to have won the Tour de France five times - Jacques Anquetil, Eddy Merckx, Bernard Hinault and Miguel Indurain.

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