Grimandi banned for Lazio incident

Click to follow
The Independent Football

UEFA, the game's Europe's governing body, reacted to Arsenal's fiery Champions' League game against Lazio on Tuesday by imposing bans on Sinisa Mihajlovic for racist abuse and Gilles Grimandi for violent conduct.

UEFA, the game's Europe's governing body, reacted to Arsenal's fiery Champions' League game against Lazio on Tuesday by imposing bans on Sinisa Mihajlovic for racist abuse and Gilles Grimandi for violent conduct.

Mihajlovic, Lazio's Yugoslav defender, has been banned for two matches for racially abusing Patrick Vieira, while Grimandi has been handed a three-match suspension for striking Diego Simeone.

Following the 1-1 draw, the French midfielder Vieira claimed Mihajlovic had taunted him throughout the match in Rome, including calling him a "black monkey". Mihajlovic admitted as much, though denied he was racist, and said Vieira had called him a "gypsy".

Grimandi's assault on Simeone - missed by the referee, Hellmut Krug - came after the Argentinian had tugged his shirt. It left his opponent needing six stitches to a cut near his eye. The action follows an investigation by Uefa, who studied both reports from the referee and their own observer.

A statement said: "Mihajlovic has been suspended for the remaining two group matches of the Uefa Champions' League as a result of sustained racist insults directed at Arsenal FC players throughout the match. The Yugoslav player admitted the verbal abuse, alleging he had previously been provoked."

Lazio have also been fined £29,000 after objects were thrown at players and match officials, and for Simeone and Juan Sebastian Veron's roles in confrontations with Arsenal players after the final whistle. Arsenal were fined £8,300 after arriving on the pitch three minutes late. They also had to be called three times before they emerged from the dressing-room for the second half. Both clubs have until midnight on Monday to lodge appeals.

Mark Hughes is poised to make one of the most unexpected transfers of the season - to Leicester City. The Everton stalwart is wanted by the Foxes manager, Peter Taylor, to give him more options and power up front, and he hopes to do a deal in the next few days. The 37-year-old Hughes, who also coaches Wales, is drifting out of Walter Smith's plans at Everton and they would release him despite injuries to Duncan Ferguson and Francis Jeffers.

Sheffield Wednesday have completed the loan signing of the former Wimbledon striker Efan Ekoku. The 33-year-old moves from the Swiss club Grasshopper Zurich for whom he finished second in the league's scoring charts with 16 goals. Ekoku is expected to play in tomorrow's First Division match against Birmingham City.

Robbie Blake is set to stay with Nottingham Forest for another month. The Bradford City striker's two-month loan spell with David Platt's side had been due to end after the visit of Watford to the City Ground today.

Franz Beckenbauer has confirmed that Berlin's Olympic stadium will stage the 2006 World Cup final, while Munich will host the opening game.

* Leeds United announced a 39 per cent increase in annual profits to £3m. Turnover reached a record £57.1m.

Comments