The Swiss fourth division football authority is a strict group of administrators - this week they handed out a ban of half a century for a player who kicked a ball at the referee’s face and sprayed him with water.
As reported by The Guardian and Swiss newspaper Blick, Portugal Futebol Clube defender Ricardo Ferreira was a little disappointed after his side slipped to a 1-0 defeat against SC Worb in the Bern League.
He wasn’t even playing though. Ferreira, who was once banned for 45 matches after being found to have assaulted an opponent and abused a match official, was an unused substitute for the match.
But after the game, he ran onto the pitch and booted the ball at the referee’s face. As if that wasn’t enough, he followed it up by spraying water from a water bottle into his face - a bit childish.
I had expected one or two years maximum. But 50 years? Football’s my life - Ricardo Ferreira
The Swiss football authorities, obviously taking into account his prior transgressions, slapped him with a 50-year ban.
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“We do not want such a player in our league,” said Robert Breiter, the Swiss amateur league’s lawyer. “Unfortunately, we encounter such cases about once a year.”
As for Ferreira, he was understandably a little shocked by the severity of the punishment.
“I had expected one or two years maximum. But 50 years? Football’s my life.”
It has to be said, when even the player himself is expecting a two year ban for his actions on the field, it’s probably safe to say that he’s not the sort of person you’d want playing anyway.
Officially, Ferreira has been suspended indefinitely, but 50 years is the maximum possible and the Swiss authorities needed an end date for their computer records to process the disciplinary action.