'Football must take responsibility now'

Ferdinand: For the judgement
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The Independent Football

It's the punishment that, on balance, is proportionate and it's certainly the punishment that will not leave people thinking the FA have gone soft on drugs.

Sebastian Coe, who is advising the FA on their procedures

Our main concern with any doping offence is that the governing body follow the rules and regulations, and we are very satisfied that the FA have gone through a proper process and a proper hearing.

John Scott, acting head of doping agency UK Sport

Everybody in football has to understand how important it is that we are drug free. The clubs and managers have to make it abundantly clear to young professional footballers who are earning tremendous amounts of money that they do not succumb to temptations. Professional football must understand it has to take responsibility for this now.

Graham Taylor, the former England manager

He has dodged the bullet in some respects. The sentence is a third of the theoretical maximum he could have got, so he's done pretty well.

Dick Pound, president of the World Anti-Doping Agency

Certainly the sentence is harsh. But the FA were determined to send out a strong message on drugs. They deserve support for being tough.

Editorial in the 'Sun', for whom Ferdinand writes

Our view would be that this type of offence would carry at least a six-month ban so it is in line with what we would expect to happen if the player had failed to take a test during a Uefa competition.

Rob Faulkner, Uefa spokesman

A sense of dignity was finally restored to football when Rio Ferdinand received the punishment only the misguided and those driven by self-interest at Manchester United considered unjust.

Matt Lawton, 'Daily Mail' football correspondent

If it had been an athlete it would have been a two-year ban.

Nick Davies of the International Association of Athletic Federations

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