FA laws: New five-year bans for grassroots players who assault a referee

By Louise GwilliamBBC Sport
The new rules will come into force for the forthcoming season and will also apply at youth levels

Players at grassroots level who assault a match official will now receive a minimum five-year ban, the Football Association has told BBC Sport.

The new laws, to be introduced for the 2017-18 season, will apply to 'step five' - four tiers beneath the National League - and leagues below.

There will also be at least an 84-day ban and £100 fine for any physical contact with a match official.

Verbal threats will incur a minimum 56-day ban, or six matches, and £50 fine.

These sanctions will be a minimum, but a commission can increase the ban based on aggravating factors.

Earlier this month the FA also confirmed 32 grassroots leagues in England will trial sin-bins in the 2017-18 season.

Players will now spend 10 minutes out of the game if they are shown a yellow card for dissent.

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