McGrath faces 35-MATCH BAN after FA charges while playing for Poppies

The Football Association have come down hard on the defender who was with Kettering Town last season

Monday, 31st May 2021, 8:30 am
Updated Monday, 31st May 2021, 8:32 am
One of the big charges levelled at Michael McGrath related to an incident during Kettering Town's 3-0 defeat to Leamington in the FA Trophy in January. Picture by Peter Short

Michael McGrath is facing a whopping 35-match ban from three Football Association charges against him while playing for Kettering Town during the curtailed 2020-21 season.

The defender denied all three charges but all three were found to be proven with the player now facing a total of 35 matches suspended and total fines of £1,550.

The biggest ban thrown at McGrath came following an incident during the Poppies’ 3-0 defeat at Leamington in the fourth round of the Buildbase FA Trophy on January 19 this year, which proved to be their final game of the curtailed campaign.

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McGrath was involved in an ugly confrontation with the match referee, which result in him being sent-off.

The FA charges for that incident read as follows: “1. It is alleged that in or around the 11th minute of the fixture the participant used abusive and/or insulting words towards the match referee, contrary to Rule E3.1.

“Further, or alternatively, it is alleged that this breach of FA Rule E3.1 is an “aggravated breach” as defined in Rule E3.2, as it included a reference to disability.

“2. It is alleged that following the participant’s dismissal, the participant’s language and/or behaviour towards the match referee was abusive and/or insulting, contrary to Rule E3.1. It is alleged that this breach of FA Rule E3.1 is an “aggravated breach” as defined in Rule E3.2, as it included a reference to sexual orientation.

“3. It is alleged that following the participant’s dismissal, the participant’s language and/or behaviour towards the match referee was threatening.

“4. It is alleged that following the participant’s dismissal from the field of play, the participant’s language and/or behaviour in or around the tunnel area amounts to improper conduct, contrary to Rule E3.1.”

It is stated on the FA website that the charges were denied but the result was proven with McGrath handed a 21-match suspension, £750 fine and an FA face to face education course.

The first charge related to an incident following Kettering’s 1-1 draw with Guiseley at Latimer Park on November 24.

The charge read as follows: “It is alleged that in the hospitality suite at Kettering Town Football Club following the above fixture, the participant used abusive and/or insulting language towards a match official, contrary to Rule E3.1.

“It is further alleged that this breach of Rule E3.1 is an “aggravated breach”, as defined in Rule E3.2, as the language included a reference to sexual orientation.”

The charge was again denied but the result was proven with McGrath handed a 10-match suspension, £600 fine and an FA face to face education course.

The third charge related to the 3-3 draw at Hereford four days later on November 28 in which McGrath was sent-off for two bookable offences.

The FA charges read as follows: “1. It is alleged that in or around the 70th minute, the participant’s language towards a match official was abusive and/or insulting.

“2. It is alleged that following the participant’s dismissal, the participant’s behaviour in/around the dugout amounts to improper conduct.”

The charges were denied but have been listed as proven with the punishment being a four-match suspension and £200 fine.

The Poppies have, so far, not confirmed the status of McGrath’s future with the club as they begin their preparations for the new National League North campaign starting in August.