French match British ban on Cantona

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The Independent Online
Eric Cantona was stripped of the French captaincy last night just hours after his club, Manchester United, had responded to pressure from the Football Association by suspending him from all first team games for the rest of the season.

The French Football Federation also announced that Cantona would not play for the national team again this season.

Crystal Palace, meanwhile, announced it had banned the fan who was kicked by Cantona during the match with United on Wednesday night. The club said Matthew Simmons had broken ground regulations by leaving his seat to go to the front of the stand to abuseCantona.

Manchester United also fined Cantona two weeks' wages, about £20,000, and the FA welcomed the fine and ban which rules the player out of the last 16 League fixtures as well as FA Cup ties beginning with today's fourth round clash with Wrexham.

Graham Kelly, the FA's chief executive, said he was pleased United had acknowledged their responsibility to the wider interests of the game. Both they and the player had expressed regret for the events of Wednesday night.

Reports, pages 46, 48

Leading article, letters p 12