20-game suspension imposed on player who threatened match official

posted in: News, Referees

Central Football have banned a senior player for 20 matches, saying they won’t tolerate threatening behaviour towards match officials.

The player, from an unnamed club, was found guilty of threatening a match official with physical violence along with offensive, foul and abusive language towards a match official in a senior men’s match in May 2024, the federation says.

The lengthy ban was imposed by the Central Football Regional Association Disciplinary Committee (RADC).

In a statement, Central Football said: “The independent committee have suspended the player for 20 matches finding that he was guilty of multiple breaches of the New Zealand Disciplinary Code and Code of Conduct pertaining to behaviour towards a match official both during and post the game.

“The most serious offence was deemed to be the player threatening physical violence and intimidation of the match official immediately after the match to the point where others needed to help escort the match official to his car.”

‘(We) will not tolerate this sort of behaviour’

Central Football chief executive Darren Mason said: “Unfortunately, we still have a small minority of players that continue to act in this way and have little to no respect for our match officials or others.

“The type of person that feels the need to threaten an official with physical harm is not the type of person we want in our game, and we have made it abundantly clear to all clubs that we will take strong action against this sort of behaviour, and we have.

“The length of this suspension should serve as a clear indicator that Central Football will not tolerate this sort of behaviour and that we will take whatever action necessary to rid this and the people who demonstrate this from our game.”

This story was first published on May 22, 2024.

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