Football: Dixon banned for Wembley fracas

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The Independent Online
LEE DIXON has been given a one-match suspension and will miss Arsenal's Champions' League match with Panathinaikos in Athens next Wednesday, after an investigation by Uefa, European football's ruling body, into his red card during the bad-tempered game against Lens at Wembley last week.

The former England fullback was left in apparent agony on the Wembley turf after an angry exchange in stoppage time with Lens' Tony Vairelles, which resulted in Vairelles being sent off. Although Dixon was not booked by the referee, Anders Frisk, Uefa's control and disciplinary committee yesterday ruled that he started the trouble by elbowing his opponent in the back.

Vairelles and the Lens coach, Daniel Leclercq, accused Dixon of feigning injury to get the French international striker sent off - just seconds after the Arsenal midfielder Ray Parlour was given a red card for kicking out at the Lens midfielder, Cyril Rool.

A Uefa spokesman said: "After studying the referee's report and also that of the Uefa delegate,we have decided that disciplinary action must be taken even if the referee was not able to see gross unsporting conduct and was therefore unable to take any factual decision."

Uefa also confirmed that Parlour will be suspended "for at least one match" for his red card - but they have deemed his offence "an act of violence" and look certain to extend the ban to at least three games when its committee meets again in January. Any extra ban would be served the next time the Gunners qualify for Europe.

The Aston Villa and England striker, Dion Dublin, has successfully appealed to the Premier League and has had a fine of two weeks' wages imposed by former club, Coventry City, overturned. He was fined pounds 30,000 for allegedly refusing to play for the Sky Blues during transfer negotiations.

Tottenham have completed the pounds 1.75m signing of the Ipswich full-back, Mauricio Taricco, following his recovery from an ankle injury.

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