A Dutch footballer has been handed a three-year ban for attacking a referee after being sent off.
The incident occurred in an amateur match in the Netherlands between OMC and Raamsdonk earlier this month. Referee Jester Francisca claimed he was stamped on and then punched having sent off the angered player.
The player was already on a booking and after being issued a second yellow reacted furiously, striking the official twice while he lay on the ground. Francisca was taken to hospital but escaped the attack with minor injuries.
"After missing a chance, I heard him use a very serious word," he told AD after the match. "Such words do not belong at a football pitch.
"He came down to me and stamped on my leg. When I lay on the ground, he struck my head twice.
"We travelled together for two years together to school. He did not apologise. I decided to call off the game because I could not guarantee my own safety. The captain did not want to continue playing."
The KNVB have started an investigation into the actions of the player, who reportedly refused to apologise.
"This kind of business really does not belong in a football field," football federation spokesman Bram Groot said.
Francisca has not been deterred by the incident. "On Saturday I will referee youth and Sunday seniors," he added. "I only started three years ago and want to referee as high as possible."