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Dundee United’s Mark Connolly punished for breaching Covid-19 regulations

Mark Connolly File Photo
(Image credit: Jeff Holmes)

Dundee United defender Mark Connolly has been handed a suspended two-match ban after being charged with breaching Covid-19 regulations and a failure to act in the best interests of football.

The Irishman was reported to have become involved in a row with a taxi driver when he refused to wear a face mask after climbing into a cab following a night out in Dundee in August.

The 28-year-old was hit with two charges from Scottish Football Association compliance officer Clare Whyte.

He was accused of breaching rule 24 – which covers SFA laws and procedures – as well as rule 77, which relates to failing to act in the best interests of the game with the “improper use” of “threatening, abusive, indecent or insulting words or behaviour”.

Now a Hampden disciplinary hearing has decided to impose a two-match ban, suspended until March 31, when it will be wiped provided Connolly does not breach either of the two rules again.

The former Kilmarnock stopper made his return from a month-long ankle injury lay-off during United’s 1-1 draw with Hamilton on Saturday.

United released a statement back in August insisting the incident would be treated as “an internal matter” but vowing to investigate “thoroughly”.

Meanwhile, Ross County manager Stuart Kettlewell will spend the Staggies’ next three games sitting in the stand after being found guilty of two SFA charges.

Kettlewell was accused of misconduct for questioning the integrity of referee John Beaton following his side’s August defeat by Livingston.

The Dingwall manager was involved in a heated exchange with the official at full-time before receiving a red card as they walked towards the tunnel.

He later hit out at Beaton, saying: “I have got myself involved with the referee at the end there, but I am not having someone speak to me with such arrogance.

“He sent me off because I lost my cool, but I approach people in the right manner and when someone treats you like a second-class citizen then I won’t be having that.”

That saw him charged with rule 72 – which covers comments indicating “bias or incompetence on the part of a match official or remarks about which impinge on his character”.

He was also issued a notice of complaint for allegedly breaching disciplinary rule 203 – “No member of team staff shall commit misconduct at a match.”

Kettlewell has been given a five-game ban, with two suspended until the end of the season.