KUALA LUMPUR – Malaysian goalkeeper Farizal Marlias was slapped with a one-year ban from all competitions by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) on Friday after man-handling match officials in a defeat suffered by his club side Johor Darul Ta’zim (JDT) in the AFC Cup last month.
JDT were knocked out of the regional competition after losing 2-1 to Ceres-Negros in the Philippines in the second leg of the zonal semifinal on May 31.
On top of the ban, Farizal was fined US$40,000 for his aggressive behaviour.
Also punished was JDT’s Mexican coach Benjamin Mora, who received a US$7,000 fine for insulting the AFC staff and match officials after the defeat.
“The match suspension shall be served on an Asia-wide basis [in all domestic, continental and international matches, whether friendly, non-official or official matches],” read a statement from the AFC.
“Farizal was expelled by the referee for using his fist to push the referee in the chest, an act of violent conduct. After being expelled, the player used his fists to push the referee in the chest, used his hands to push the second assistant referee, and used his shoulder to push the first assistant referee.
“He used his hands to push the fourth official as he exited the field of play, all actions which brings the game of football into serious disrepute.”
Farizal lost his cool when Chinese referee Fu Ming awarded Ceres a contentious added-time penalty after JDT defender Aidil Zafuan had barged into Manuel Herrera from a corner.
Fernando Rodriguez stepped up to coolly dispatch the spot kick beyond Farizal and dump the 2015 champions out on away goals after a 4-4 aggregate score.
Farizal’s 12-month suspension will come as a blow to the Malaysia Super League (MSL) leaders.
The 30-year-old, who has earned 31 international caps since 2009, has helped JDT build the MSL’s best defensive record, with only 11 goals conceded in 13 matches.
With the MSL window closing on June 11, the club will turn to their dependable second choice Izham Tarmizi or young Haziq Nazli.
The AFC also banned Cho Yong Hyung of Jeju United for six months, with a US$20,000 fine, for pushing the referee in the 3-0 AFC Champions League defeat against Japan’s Urawa Reds.
The South Korean side also saw Baek Donggyu and Kweon Hanjin banned for three and two months respectively for their involvement in the brawl.
Jeju (US$40,000) and Urawa (US$20,000) were also fined for the participation of their team officials in the fracas which saw players and officials chasing each other. – ESPN