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EPL: Tuchel banned for Leicester clash as FA reject appeal after Conte row

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Thomas Tuchel will be absent from the touchline when Chelsea face Leicester in the Premier League on Saturday afternoon.

The Blues boss was hit with a one-match suspension and fined £35,000 by the Football Association (FA) last week after admitting a charge of improper conduct following his heated touchline clashes with Tottenham counterpart Antonio Conte during a furious 2-2 London derby draw at Stamford Bridge on August 14.

The touchline ban was suspended pending an appeal, which Tuchel admitted at his pre-Leicester press conference on Friday he did not expect to be successful.

Such an appeal has indeed now been firmly rejected by the FA, meaning the German will be absent from the touchline when Leicester visit west London on Saturday – a game that will see French defender Wesley Fofana once again omitted by the Foxes as Chelsea prepare a fourth bid for his services before Thursday night’s summer transfer deadline.

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Tuchel can attend the fixture and interact with his players, but is not permitted to be in the dugout.

“Thomas Tuchel will be banned from the touchline for Chelsea FC’s Premier League match against Leicester City FC on Saturday 27 August 2022,” read an FA statement.

“The manager admitted that his behaviour after the final whistle of the Premier League game against Tottenham Hotspur FC on Sunday 14 August 2022 was improper.

“An independent regulatory commission subsequently ordered for him to be fined £35,000 and suspended from the touchline for one fixture during a hearing.”

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Spurs boss Conte, meanwhile, escaped a touchline ban and was handed a lesser £15,000 fine for his part in the ugly fracas at the Bridge – something which dumbfounded Tuchel, who said he could not understand why their punishments differed.

However, the independent FA commission saw Tuchel as the clear instigator of the bust-up that followed the post-match handshake, with the Chelsea coach not letting go of Conte’s hand and sparking another melee, having apparently been offended that his opposite number did not look him in the eyes.

“That a greater share of the blame for the incident ought to have been attributed to Antonio Conte shows a worrying lack of insight on his (Tuchel’s) part both as to quite how serious his conduct was, whether by comparison to Antonio Conte’s reaction or per se, and as to the cause of the events that, quite predictably, followed his conduct,” read the appeal board’s statement.

Tuchel insistent he’ll use ‘no comment’ method on refs as Chelsea boss finds ban ‘hard to accept’

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“In our view the sanction that the commission imposed on the appellant was not ‘excessive in all the circumstances’; it was not materially more than that which was necessary or proportionate in the circumstances of the case.

“Finally, we order the appellant to pay the costs of the Appeal Board in the sum of £1,600 and the £100 appeal fee. We make that order to reflect the lack of merit in the appeal.”

Tuchel is also awaiting the outcome of a second FA charge for alleged improper conduct relating to the derby with Spurs, having strongly criticised the performance of referee Anthony Taylor following two controversial Tottenham goals and suggested that he should not be involved in officiating Chelsea matches in future.

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