Serbian duo banned for a year

England Under-21s beat Serbia 1-0 before the unsavoury scenes

England Under-21s beat Serbia 1-0 before the unsavoury scenes

First published in National Sport News © by

The Serbian football association has banned two Under-21 players for a year following the unsavoury scenes at the end of this month's European Championship qualifier against England.

Nikola Ninkovic and Ognjen Mudrinski have been suspended from all national teams for their part in a mass brawl after England booked their place in the finals with a 1-0 win in Krusevac. A statement from the FSS also revealed two staff members, Srdjan Maksimovic and Andreja Milutinovic, had also been suspended for two years.

"Having reviewed the television footage of the incidents, the FSS disciplinary committee decided to ban Ninkovic and Mudrinski from playing for Serbia at any level for a period of one year," a statement on the FSS website read.

"Also, staff members Srdjan Maksimovic and Andreja Milutinovic have been banned from their coaching duties at any level for Serbia for two years. All four have violated the FSS ethics and fair-play code."

The sanctions were handed down at a special meeting of the FSS's disciplinary committee after the governing body carried out an investigation into the trouble after the match.

Players from both teams clashed on the pitch following the final whistle amid accusations of racism from the stands towards England left-back Danny Rose.

UEFA subsequently charged both countries while the Football Association reported "a number of incidents of racism to UEFA".

The FSS initially denied any form of racism towards the England players, but subsequently called an investigation in which all of the players and staff involved were asked to give statements.

After the sanctions were handed down former Serbia international Savo Milosevic, who is now the country's director of national teams, condemned the behaviour of the players and officials involved.

"First of all, I do not dare to comment on the sentence," he said. "Regardless of that I would suggest that in the future this or similar behaviour will not be tolerated. As such it is not and will never be acceptable to all those in the Serbian FA."

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