Aleksandar Mitrovic banned for EIGHT matches! Fulham striker punished for grabbing referee during Man Utd clash but FA want even harsher sanction

Aleksandr Mitrovic Fulham red card vs Manchester United 2022-23
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Aleksandar Mitrovic has been handed an eight-game ban for grabbing referee Chris Kavanagh during his side's FA Cup defeat to Manchester United.
  • Mitrovic pushed referee
  • Fulham manager also in trouble
  • FA confirms punishments

WHAT HAPPENED? The FA confirmed their ruling regarding Mitrovic on Tuesday evening, with Cottagers manager Marco Silva also hit with a two-game touchline ban for his angry reaction to the incident.

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THE BIGGER PICTURE: Silva reacted angrily after his team-mate Willian was shown a red card for handball on the line. After Kavanagh pointed to the spot, Mitrovic also confronted the official, eventually pushing him and earning a red card of his own. Later, he would bizarrely claim he was simply trying to get the referee's attention.

WHAT THEY SAID: "We claimed the standard punishment which would otherwise apply to Aleksandar Mitrovic for the sending-off offence of violent conduct that he committed towards the match referee around the 72nd minute was clearly insufficient. The forward denied this, but it was upheld by the Regulatory Commission, and a three-match ban was imposed," a statement from an independent Regulatory Commission read.

"This is in addition to the three-match ban he had already received for the red card offence. The forward separately admitted that his behaviour and language after being sent off was improper, abusive, insulting and threatening, and the Regulatory Commission imposed an additional two-match ban and £75,000 fine. In total, the Regulatory Commission has suspended Aleksandar Mitrovic for eight matches. One of these has already been served, and therefore the forward will be unavailable for Fulham FC’s next seven matches."

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WHAT NEXT? The news is a huge blow for the Cottagers, who currently have an outside chance of securing some form of European football for next season. Their offensive talisman is now set to miss games against the likes of Aston Villa, Manchester City and Liverpool. Responding to the decision, the FA indicated their desire to appeal the sanction, likely as they feel Mitrovic should face an even longer ban for his action.