FOOTBALL: Kinnear and Jones pay for misconduct

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The Independent Online
Joe Kinnear, the Wimbledon manager, has been banned from the touchline until 31 October and fined £1,500 after being found guilty of misconduct by the Football Association. Wimbledon's captain, Vinnie Jones, has also been found guilty of misconduct and fined £1,750 and warned as to his future conduct.

Kinnear faced two charges of misconduct: he called referee Mike Reed a "cheat" after he disallowed a late Wimbledon goal in their 2-1 defeat at Newcastle in January; and he called referee Robbie Hart a "little Hitler" after he sent off the Wimbledon defender Alan Kimble in their 1-0 home defeat by Manchester United last month.

Jones was also charged after the Newcastle game, when police complained that he swore at Newcastle's manager, Kevin Keegan, in the players' tunnel after the game.

A three-man FA commission took more than four hours to deliver its verdict, receiving evidence from the police, referees and linesmen, as well as studying video evidence. Kinnear attended with Wimbledon's chief executive, David Barnard, but neither would comment afterwards. Jones did not attend and submitted written, rather than bitten, evidence.

David Davies, the FA Director of Public Affairs, said: "A Football Association commission has considered two charges of misconduct by the Wimbledon manager, Joe Kinnear. They related to incidents - and notably the use of insulting language to referees - during or after two FA Carling Premiership matches earlier this year.

"The commission heard from the referees of both matches. Evidence was also given by the two linesmen at the Newcastle versus Wimbledon game as well as two police officers from Northumbria police. Video evidence from both matches was studied.

"Joe Kinnear apologised to both referees for his use of the word `cheat' in comments he had made to them. He insisted what he meant was that they had made mistakes. He had never intended to question their integrity. Such language, he believed, was not uncommon and didn't bring the game into disrepute. The commission disagreed. Mr Kinnear was found guilty of both charges.

"The commission heard that Mr Kinnear had committed three previous offences relating to the use of insulting language. In 1992 he had been banned from the touchline for a month."

Terry Hurlock made history yesterday when he was fined £400 and given a four-match ban after becoming the first player to register 61 points in the 21 years of the current disciplinary system. It means the former Millwall, Rangers and Southampton midfielder will have been suspended for a total of 15 matches this season while his total financial punishment is £1,000.

Barry Hearn took his mind off The Crucible by appointing the former West Ham player Pat Holland as manager of Leyton Orient yesterday. Holland, also a former player at Brisbane Road, has a three-year contract with Orient, who are already relegated from the Second Division.

The kick-off for Blackburn's crucial home Premiership match with Newcastle on 8 May has been brought forward from 8pm to 7.40 so the national two minutes' silence to commemorate VE Day can be observed at half-time.

Liverpool are reportedly ready to pay £6m for Benfica's 23-year-old Portuguese international striker Joo Pinto, who played in Wednesday's 1-0 defeat by the Republic of Ireland in Dublin.

Franco Baresi, the 36-year-old Milan defender, has dispelled any thoughts that next month's European Cup final against Ajax in Vienna could be his last game for the club by signing a new one-year contract.

Charlton's final challenge, page 36

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