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Anelka joins list of soccer banned boys

Following the lengthy bans handed out by the French Football Federation yesterday, including Nicolas Anelka's 18-match suspension, we at Left of Centre take a look at other players to have felt the wrath of the authorities.


In probably the most notorious act of retribution ever committed in a football ground, the Manchester United star launched a kung-fu style kick at Crystal Palace fan Matthew Simmons, who was taunting him following his sending off in a Premier League match in January 1995.

Cantona was banned from all football for eight months and fined £30,000, while he was also sentenced to 120 hours of community service after an appeal court overturned a two-week prison sentence for assault.

In a press conference following the incident, Cantona uttered his most famous quote, saying: "When the seagulls follow the trawler, it's because they think sardines will be thrown into the sea." He then got up from his seat and left.


Sheffield Wednesday forward Di Canio reacted angrily to being sent off during a home match against Arsenal in 1998 and shoved referee Paul Alcock to the ground.

The Football Association responded by banning the Italian for 11 matches, three for the red card and eight for his reaction, and fining him £10,000.


In a similar incident to Di Canio's, Prutton lost his head after being shown a second yellow card in a match between Southampton and Arsenal. The Saints midfielder attempted to reach the assistant referee Paul Norman, who had recommended the booking, and in doing so pushed referee Alan Wiley.

Prutton was also given an 11-match ban, but this time 10 of those were for his actions after being shown the card and only one for the dismissal.


France legend Zidane stunned the watching billions with his headbutt to the chest of Italy's Marco Materazzi in the 2006 World Cup final. The midfielder was subsequently banned for three games and fined more than £3,000 by world governing body FIFA, although it was academic as Zidane had already decided to retire. Instead, he spent three days working with FIFA as a form of community service. Materazzi received a two-match suspension for provoking Zidane.


The Italy defender was suspended for eight matches after breaking the nose of Spain defender Luis Enrique in an off-the-ball incident at the end of the World Cup quarter-final in 1994.