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Giwa FC defender Raji denies punching ref, to appeal suspension

19 November 2015, 12:11

Lagos - Giwa FC defender Nojeem Raji has denied punching a referee and will appeal the ban placed on him by the League Management Company (LMC), the defender has revealed.

Raji, and teammate Amos Gyang where both sent off in the first half of their last game of the season against Nasarawa United in Lafia with the home side leading 2-0. Giwa however felt undone by the decisions of the referee, which preempted them to abandon the game.

The LMC however slammed the club and its players with fines and suspensions, a development which hasn't gone down well with the club.

In a statement released on Tuesday, the LMC explained their decision.

Also read: NPFL Final Day showdown as Giwa, Nasarawa and Wikki fights on

"For assaulting a ball boy, Gyang was charged for breach of article C1 for violent conduct amounting to misconduct, contrary to the principles of sportsmanship and capable of bringing the league to disrepute.

“On the second charge of breach of article C8, he was charged for refusal to retire to the dressing room after being sent off the match by the Referee. He was fined N50 000 on the first count and suspended for two matches on the second count.

"Raji was banned for six matches for breach of article C1 of the Framework and Rules of the Nigeria Professional Football League which cited him for failing to show respect for the decision of the Referee, when he punched the Referee in the face amid protests by his team mates. He was thus cited for conduct contrary to the principle of sportsmanship and capable of bringing the League to disrepute.

“On the second charge, Raji was cited for breach of article C8 of the Framework and Rules of the Nigeria Professional Football League, for refusing to leave the field of play after he was issued with a red card and sent off by the Referee. He was therefore suspended for two matches," the LMC statement read.

But Raji has insisted he will appeal the decision.

"I will definitely appeal the decision of the LMC," the defender said when asked.

"They (LMC) should also hear my side of the story because I did not hit the referee as they claim. I did not hit him so I will appeal," he said.

Giwa FC were also fined N3m and charged for abandoning the game.

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- News24


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