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Yorkshire Amateur manager Phil Harding accepts that his winger Fernando Moke “deserved a ban”, but he believes a four month suspension is excessive.
Moke has been suspended from all football activity for making physical contact with the referee of the 2-2 draw with Teversal nearly three weeks ago.
The former Ossett Town winger had been sent off for a dangerous tackle, prior to the altercation with the match official.
As it stands, Moke will miss 16 games for the Ammers – five more than then-Sheffield Wednesday striker Paolo Di Canio received for pushing referee Paul Alcock to the ground in 1998.
Postponements are likely to decrease the number of games that Moke will sit out.
“He deserved a ban because you can’t touch the ref, but I feel the length of it is harsh,” Harding told Non League Yorkshire.
“I think certain parts of the referee’s report have been exaggerated because it wasn’t as bad as it has been made out. It has been taken way out of context.
“He did make brief contact using the palm of his hand. It was a literally a tap on the ref’s shoulders. The ref didn’t even move, he didn’t go backwards. The contact was nothing.
“The actual red card was very harsh in the first place and I didn’t think it was the correct decision. Ferdy was frustrated when he saw the red and he touched the ref. He didn’t even say anything to the ref.
“I think people have got lesser punishments for doing a lot worse.”
The Ammers and Moke have decided against appealing. He will be available for selection again after February 26th.
The length of the ban highlights inconsistencies in the FA’s disciplinary system.
In 2015, then Manchester United attacker Angel di Maria grabbed hold of referee Michael Oliver during his side’s FA Cup tie with Arsenal. He was dismissed for a second bookable offence and served a one match suspension, but somehow escaped an additional ban.