Football: Jones takes his case to an appeal

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VINNIE JONES has decided to appeal against a Football Association fine of pounds 20,000 and a six- month suspended ban even though he runs the risk of having the punishment increased, writes Trevor Haylett.

Initially, the Wimbledon midfielder said he would pay up and attempt to put behind him the latest controversy over his part in a video film highlighting the dirty tricks in the game.

But it seems he has been swayed by the conviction of the club's owner, Sam Hammam, that the verdict of the FA disciplinary commission was too harsh, particularly as it punished his club when Jones had been a Sheffield United player at the time of filming.

'If the suspended ban stays in force it will devalue our player,' Hammam said. 'If Wimbledon were relegated and we tried to sell Vinnie because we could no longer afford his wages who would buy him with this suspended sentence hanging over him? I believe the verdict was harsh and unjustified and we cannot accept it.'

A new three-man commission will be appointed to hear the appeal.

An FA official said: 'If the appeal is lost the commission's options include increasing the fine, the suspension or both.'