By Jonathan Veal, PA
Cristiano Ronaldo has been banned for two matches and handed a £50,000 fine by the Football Association for hitting a mobile phone out of a fan’s hand at Everton.
The 37-year-old, who is now a free agent following his release from Manchester United on Tuesday, had the altercation with the 14-year-old boy after a 1-0 defeat at Goodison Park on April 9, and was cautioned by Merseyside Police.
The FA also charged the Portugal forward with improper conduct and an independent panel has handed down a suspension and hefty fine.
Cristiano Ronaldo has been suspended for two matches, fined £50,000 and warned as to his future conduct for a breach of FA Rule E3.
— FA Spokesperson (@FAspokesperson) November 23, 2022
The ban will be transferred when Ronaldo joins a new club in any country, but does not count in the World Cup.
A statement from the FA read: “Cristiano Ronaldo has been suspended for two matches, fined £50,000 and warned as to his future conduct for a breach of FA rule E3.
“The forward admitted that his conduct after the final whistle of the Premier League game between Manchester United FC and Everton FC on Saturday 9 April 2022 was improper.
“An independent regulatory commission found that his conduct was both improper and violent during a subsequent hearing, and imposed these sanctions.”
Ronaldo had accepted the FA charge but requested a personal hearing in a bid to try to avoid a suspension.
Cristiano Ronaldo is to leave Manchester United by mutual agreement, with immediate effect.
The club thanks him for his immense contribution across two spells at Old Trafford.#MUFC
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) November 22, 2022
During the independent hearing, held over Microsoft Teams on November 8, Ronaldo claimed he had “legitimate concern… for his own physical safety and well-being and leaving the field of play” after approaching the tunnel where Everton fans were congregating.
However, the panel rejected the claim, citing it was an “act born of frustration and annoyance rather than fear or concern for his wellbeing”.
The panel also rejected the FA’s submission that Ronaldo should be banned for three games.
If and when Ronaldo serves the suspension remains to be seen following his exit from Old Trafford on Tuesday, which leaves him currently without a club.
The ban will carry over if he joins another team under the jurisdiction of the FA and it will also be transferred to a new association, meaning he must serve a two-game domestic sanction.