Hampshire Football Association misconduct charges, suspensions and fines of more than £700 could cause Southampton-based Hampshire League side Infinity to fold, claims club

Grass-roots Southampton football club claims disciplinary charges could force it to fold

Grass-roots Southampton football club claims disciplinary charges could force it to fold

First published in Sport

A grass roots football club claim they could fold after being hit with a series of misconduct charges, suspensions and fines of over £700.

Southampton-based Infinity are appealing hefty bans handed out by the Hampshire FA for a string of alleged wrongdoing during the final game of the Hampshire Premier League Division 1 season.

Players Leon Elliott, Jack Jewel and Daniel Martin face fines of £150 each and a ban of 182 days from football, which would rule them out of playing again until next February.

The allegations against them state “improper conduct against a match official (including physical contact and threatening and/or abusive language/behaviour)”. In addition, player Jody Hoare faces a £150 fine and a whopping 15-match ban.

His charges state “offensive, insulting or abusive language towards the match official; threatening behaviour towards the match official”.

Infinity are also facing a £100 fine for misconduct and causing the match to be abandoned. The Hill Lane-based outfit protested to referee Orbay Keskin against a decision not to award them a goal against Broughton at Taunton’s College in late April.

What resulted was, according to Hoare: “a melee of shouting” before Keskin abandoned the game with 25 minutes left.

Infinity feel they are being unfairly treated by the county FA and face folding if their appeals fail, as they won’t be able to foot the bill.

The Hampshire League will welcome them back if they are able to continue, according to the club.

The Hampshire FA released a statement to the Daily Echo saying: “We received a report from the match referee after he had abandoned the match between Infinity FC and Broughton FC on 26 April 2014. “As a result of this report, a number of misconduct charges were raised. Three Infinity players were charged with assault on a referee, one player was charged with making comments of a racist nature, and two further club members were charged with improper conduct. “The club were also charged with causing the match to be abandoned. The individual charges were considered by an independent panel and the fines and suspensions imposed were communicated to the club and the individuals concerned. “The club and individuals concerned do have a right of appeal against the decisions to The Football Association.”

Hampshire FA said Keskin wouldn’t be allowed to comment on the incident.

Infinity claim their punishments are too severe, insisting their protests did not involve any forceful physical contact.

Manager and secretary Michael Bulman, 33, said: “The whole situation has been blown right out of proportion. “The punishment we’ve received is ridiculous. We have made the decision to take it to appeal at the FA headquarters at Wembley.

“The assault charges are outrageous. All the players did were put their hands on the referee’s shoulder to get his attention in protest of what had happened. “We fully accept and plead guilty to the foul and abusive language; it’s the assault charges that we are fighting against.”

Hoare, a full-time parent from Hamble, said: “It was just a melee. “There was just a lot of shouting. “I was over by the touchline with my wife and kids.

“I thought after the goal decision they’d just get on with playing but they didn’t, so I ran back over and that’s when I realised he (Keskin) had abandoned the game.

“I’m appealing my ban. I’m 100 per cent confident that I’ll get it overturned.

“I said the F-word twice, that doesn’t warrant a 15-match ban. “The rest of them only put their hands on the referee in a non-aggressive way. Their bans are excessive as well.

“We have been harshly treated by Hampshire FA. “It seems every time one of our players get a ban or a fine they get the maximum possible.

“It feels like they’re trying to drive us out.”

Infinity admit they have had previous issues with discipline. “We’re not well liked,” admitted Bulman.“We haven’t been well behaved in the past. But we had turned things around and our discipline had got much better before this match.”

No date has yet been set for Infinity’s appeal hearing.

Comments (10)

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9:03am Mon 23 Jun 14

Saint IQ says...

If you can't do the time don't do the crime..
If you can't do the time don't do the crime.. Saint IQ
  • Score: 16

9:16am Mon 23 Jun 14

Jan28th1984 says...

"A grass roots football club claim they could fold after being hit with a series of misconduct charges, suspensions and fines of over £700."

Good.
"A grass roots football club claim they could fold after being hit with a series of misconduct charges, suspensions and fines of over £700." Good. Jan28th1984
  • Score: 16

10:08am Mon 23 Jun 14

Ozmosis says...

You shouldn't be touching the referee at all.... nor using the F word at him. People see top pro's doing it, and monkey-see, monkey do. It doesn't make it right.
You shouldn't be touching the referee at all.... nor using the F word at him. People see top pro's doing it, and monkey-see, monkey do. It doesn't make it right. Ozmosis
  • Score: 13

10:25am Mon 23 Jun 14

From the sidelines says...

A gentleman's game, played by thugs.

And here we see the thugs.
A gentleman's game, played by thugs. And here we see the thugs. From the sidelines
  • Score: 8

10:46am Mon 23 Jun 14

Dasal says...

But the club are being fined only £100.
The "named players" are being hit with the biggest fines, or don't they have responsibility to pay their own fines?
If not - why not??
But the club are being fined only £100. The "named players" are being hit with the biggest fines, or don't they have responsibility to pay their own fines? If not - why not?? Dasal
  • Score: 11

2:18pm Mon 23 Jun 14

steekeemcglue says...

the referee has every right to expect not be treated to that sort of abuse in a football match... that said I have witnessed 1st hand a referee lie at a disciplinary and contradict himself and the FA panel still stood by his version of events which were impossible......
the referee has every right to expect not be treated to that sort of abuse in a football match... that said I have witnessed 1st hand a referee lie at a disciplinary and contradict himself and the FA panel still stood by his version of events which were impossible...... steekeemcglue
  • Score: 0

2:27pm Mon 23 Jun 14

666sfc says...

About time Jody Whore.. (spelling intended) was kicked out of football for good.
Nothing but a bully who even resorts to threatening his own players dare they want to leave his club.

http://www.dailyecho
.co.uk/news/4670110.
Footballer_punched_i
n_face_after_offerin
g_to_shake_hands/
About time Jody Whore.. (spelling intended) was kicked out of football for good. Nothing but a bully who even resorts to threatening his own players dare they want to leave his club. http://www.dailyecho .co.uk/news/4670110. Footballer_punched_i n_face_after_offerin g_to_shake_hands/ 666sfc
  • Score: 2

4:01pm Mon 23 Jun 14

thinklikealocal says...

Outrageous and unacceptable. These 'big men' cannot even accept responsibility for their actions, bleating like a load of hard done by children. Grow up, learn some manners and like will get a lot easier.
Outrageous and unacceptable. These 'big men' cannot even accept responsibility for their actions, bleating like a load of hard done by children. Grow up, learn some manners and like will get a lot easier. thinklikealocal
  • Score: 2

12:44pm Tue 24 Jun 14

Bystandergrassroots says...

A joy to watch a real team play. Cowards to turn around and abuse fellow footballers on here. I believe unfairly treated... Suspicious not letting the referee comment on the matter. Shame to see this happen at this level when it is meant to come from higher level. It doesn't seem equal throughout
A joy to watch a real team play. Cowards to turn around and abuse fellow footballers on here. I believe unfairly treated... Suspicious not letting the referee comment on the matter. Shame to see this happen at this level when it is meant to come from higher level. It doesn't seem equal throughout Bystandergrassroots
  • Score: 0

1:49pm Tue 24 Jun 14

Bungle Bonce says...

Better late than never - its about time the FA and leagues threw these teams out, there are loads playing in the Southampton Saturday/Sunday leagues that should be banned!!
Better late than never - its about time the FA and leagues threw these teams out, there are loads playing in the Southampton Saturday/Sunday leagues that should be banned!! Bungle Bonce
  • Score: 1

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