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Ban leaves Villas-Boas' Zenit future uncertain

04 September 2015, 13:24

Moscow - Andre Villas-Boas' future as manager of Russian champions Zenit St Petersburg appeared to hang in the balance on Friday after he was handed a six-match ban.

On Thursday, the Russia Football Union (RFU) disciplinary panel banned the former Porto, Chelsea and Tottenham coach for six matches for pushing the reserve referee during Zenit's league game with newly-promoted promoted Samara, which Zenit lost 3-1.

Villas-Boas refused to comment on the decision but the head of the disciplinary panel,Artur Grigoryants, said the Portuguese manager had presented his apologies for his behaviour.

"Andre (Villas-Boas) apologised to the referee," Grigoryants said. "He said it has been a temporary loss of concentration."

Also read: AVB sets Zenit ambition

However, he suggested the ban may be partially suspended.

"The penalty may be suspended after Villas-Boas serves at least at two matches," Grigoryants said.

The club, meanwhile, expressed their concern about the situation.

"For Zenit the ban of the club's manager is definitely a serious problem," a club statement read.

"The club will announce the decision on the case after discussing the situation with its head coach."

Villas-Boas, 37, has already disclosed he had asked Zenit to release him from his contract at the end of last season but the club had refused.

Meanwhile, Zenit's lacklustre league performances have angered the club's supporters, who directed abusive chamts at Villas-Boas during the Samara match, demanding his sacking.

There were also rumours that Zenit were in talks with former Borussia Dortmund manager Jurgen Klopp as a possible successor.

Zenit are currently third in the Russian Premier League, six points behind the leaders CSKA.

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