Football: FA bans and fines Wright after Upton Park outburst

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The Independent Online
IAN WRIGHT was given a three-match ban and a pounds 17,500 fine by the Football Association yesterday.

The 35-year-old West Ham striker flew into a fury after referee Rob Harris sent him off for two bookable offences after just 16 minutes of West Ham's 5-1 defeat by Leeds United at Upton Park on 1 May. After arguing his case in vain with the Oxfordshire official, Wright stormed down the players' tunnel and kicked open the door of the referee's room, where he caused damage to personal property and also a television set owned by the club.

At a personal hearing in front of a FA disciplinary panel yesterday, a contrite Wright repeated an apology he made after the game. The suspension will keep him out of West Ham's opening three Premiership games next season, and the fine is probably equivalent to his weekly wage at the club.

A week after saying he wanted to stay at Portman Road, the England Under- 21 midfielder Kieron Dyer has shocked Ipswich Town by submitting a transfer request, following the Suffolk club's failure in the First Division promotion play-offs. Leeds United are expected to lead the bidding for the 20-year- old, for whom Ipswich will want around pounds 7.5m.

The much-travelled Dave Bassett was appointed manager of Barnsley yesterday. The First Division club, who dismissed John Hendrie six weeks ago, will be hoping that the former Wimbledon and Nottingham Forest manager can add to the six promotion campaigns he has masterminded in his 18-year managerial career.

Another First Division manager, Denis Smith, was given a public vote of confidence by the remaining directors of West Bromwich Albion, after a board meeting at The Hawthorns yesterday. Three Albion directors have recently resigned.

The Everton goalkeeper, Thomas Myhre, has broken a leg in training with his country, Norway, and may not be fit for the start of next season.

Liverpool have released the former England full-back, Rob Jones.

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