WITH VIDEO: Crawley Town full-back Paul Connolly has been suspended for five matches.
Connolly was charged with violent conduct against a spectator at the end of the game against Brentford last Tuesday.
The incident was not seen by the match officials but caught on video.
The decision is subject to any appeal
The FA claimed the standard punishment of a three-match suspension would be clearly insufficient given the nature of the offence.
Connolly accepted the charge but denied the standard punishment was clearly insufficient. However, the Independent Regulatory Commission found in favour of The FA and ordered that Connolly be suspended for five matches, commencing with immediate effect.
Connolly has a hernia problem that could rule him out for the rest of the season anyway.
Last week, Crawley boss John Gregory vowed to stand by Connolly even if he was hit with a lengthy ban by the Football Association.
Gregory said: “We are all supporting Paul 100%. We will stand by him no matter what happens.”
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