Kenyan international McDonald Mariga has been handed a five-match in Serie B allegedly directing abusive language referee, Ivano Pezzuto after receiving his marching orders in his team US Latina’s game against Virtus Entella on Sunday 24 April.
The sanction is also part of the punishment handed to the midfielder after apparently squeezing the referee’s hand so hard that it caused an abrasion, drawing blood.
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The club has however denied the claims saying it will appeal the decision so that Mariga and his team mate, Carmine Gauteri, who was also sent off in the 0 – 1 loss, can be available for the next match against Spezia on Saturday 30 April.
“The US Latina Calcio, remains incredulous in front of the penalties imposed on its members by the referee and announces that it will present an appeal against the suspensions of McDonald Mariga and Carmine Gautieri because we believe it was deeply unjust and excessive,” a statement on the club’s website read.
McDonald Mariga has so far made 13 appearances since signing for Latina earlier this year and has scored two goals.
His club is currently 17th on the 22 – team Serie B log.