Jake Livermore: FA confirm Hull midfielder will avoid ban despite positive cocaine test as death of newborn baby 'severely impaired' judgement

'Due to the specific and unique nature of the circumstances surrounding the case, he will face no suspension'

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Hull City midfielder Jake Livermore will avoid a ban despite testing positive for cocaine in May, the FA confirmed as they regarded the circumstances as "exceptional and unique".

The 25-year-old has not played since the end of last season, after he was suspended by the FA and the club, pending the outcome of the disciplinary hearing.

Livermore had faced a potential two-year ban, and had tested positive after the death of his newborn baby Jake Junior - the effect on the player following the death of his young son was taken into account in a hearing by the Independent Regulatory Commission, impacted his mental health and impaired his judgement.

"Due to the specific and unique nature of the circumstances surrounding the case, he will face no suspension," a statement (available in full below) read.



It continued: "The Commission found Mr Livermore to be an entirely honest and compelling witness who gave his evidence without exaggeration... The evidence of [forensic psychiatrist] Dr Hopley was also presented... and compelling written evidence in support of the player's contention that his cognitive functions and judgement were severely impaired at the time in question.

"The tragic death of Jake Junior had a devastating effect upon Mr Livermore... The Commission has the clearest medical evidence as to the effect of this on Mr Livermore's mental health..."

A large section setting out the evidence has been redacted from the statement, which states that the Commission found the case "exceptional and unique."

- "There was no intention on Mr Livermore to enhance his performance as an athlete;

- "Mr Livermore had been tested on ten previous occasions and all tests had returned negative;

- "This was a one-off incident in respect of the use of cocaine. He had never used recreational drugs previously."

Hull manager Steve Bruce, who gave evidence, said earlier this summer: "H"There's no question it was a mitigating factor. Unfortunately he lost his baby just after the FA Cup final last year.

"Jake has kept all of the problems that he had to himself. All footballers think they are macho-men but they have problems like everybody else."

The disciplinary hearing took place last week.