Austrian player banned for 70 games for headbutting referee

Austrian player has been banned for 70 matches

Austrian player has been banned for 70 matches

An Austrian footballer has been handed a record 70-match ban for headbutting a referee during a fifth division match, the Tyrolean Football Federation confirmed on Thursday.

“The 70-match suspension is without precedent to our knowledge but it seems proportional given the gravity of the offence,” said federation spokesman Horst Scherl.

The incident occurred last Saturday during a match between SK Rum and SPG Innsbruck West in the Tyrol region of western Austria.

SK Rum midfielder Ismail Gundüz headbutted the referee as he was about to receive a second yellow card after 86 minutes while his team were trailing 3-2.

“The referee had to be hospitalised, his lip exploded, and the match was interrupted,” said Scherl.

“The disciplinary commission decided on a 70-match suspension, all parties, with the exception of the player, who disputes the facts, agreeing the intentional aspect of the gesture,” he continued.

The 26-year-old player was also suspended by his club who were fined 257 euros ($332).
“We researched and the heaviest sanction that we found was 46 matches, in Bavaria. But the sanction could have been heavier: according to our statutes, a player could get up to 108 matches,” added Scherl.

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