Birmingham defender avoids suspension

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Birmingham defender Roger Johnson has avoided a ban for comments he made about referee Martin Atkinson following the controversial derby defeat by Aston Villa last month.

The 27-year-old was incensed by Atkinson's decision to award a late penalty to Villa for his challenge on Gabriel Agbonlahor even though replays showed he played the ball.

Johnson said after the match on April 25: "The referee was a disgrace. He's ruined the match and clearly shouldn't be doing these kind of games - it was too big for him."

The former Cardiff and Wycombe centre-back was charged by the Football Association and at a personal hearing on Tuesday was fined £7,500 and warned as to his future conduct.

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Roger Johnson
Premier League

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