Benoit Assou-Ekotto handed three match ban and fine

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Tottenham Hotspur defender Benoit Assou-Ekotto has been handed a three-game ban and £50,000 fine by FA after being found guilty of improper conduct.

The charge handed to him relates to tweets he made following Nicolas Anelka's goal celebration for West Bromwich Albion in December 2013, where he used the quenelle gesture.

The left-back, who was on loan at Queens Park Rangers last season as they gained promotion back to the Premier League, was also warned about his future conduct and ordered to completed a compulsory education course.

Assou-Ekotto was not included in Tottenham's 25 man squad for this season's Premier League competition so it is unclear when this ban will take place.

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The charge against the Cameroon international was that the comment was abusive and/or indecent and/or insulting and/or improper. The FA also considered the comment to be an aggravated breach of rule E3(2), in that it included a reference to ethnic origin and/or race and/or religion or belief.

In a statement released on the FA's website, chairman of the regulatory commission, Peter Griffiths said: “Even though we have found that there was an aggravated breach of FA Rule E3 we are satisfied that when the Player sent the tweet on the 28th December 2013 congratulating Anelka.

"In his mind he believed he was congratulating Anelka on what he perceived to be an anti-establishment gesture as opposed to one associated with anti-Semitism.

But we are also satisfied of two further factors relevant to his culpability:

1) That he was certainly aware before he sent the tweet that the quenelle gesture was very much associated with Dieudonne; and
2) That he had, by then, acquired at least some knowledge of the controversies surrounding Dieudonne in the Autumn of 2013 and that these had included, rightly or wrongly, allegations concerning anti-Semitism."

Nicolas Anelka

Following Anelka's celebration, as he scored two goals in West Brom's 3-3 draw with West Ham United, his relationship with the club broke down.

The Frenchman revealed on Twitter he had terminated his contract, however the midlands club denied this and served a 14-day notice of termination of his contract due to gross misconduct.

On September 15 Anelka joined Mumbai City FC, managed by Peter Reid, for the inaugural Hero Indian Super League, which kicks off in October. 

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Tottenham Hotspur
Nicolas Anelka
Benoit Assou-Ekotto

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