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Doctor’s orders: Physio cops 9-month touchline ban as 2 players are suspended, club lose point over game abandoned after violence

Doctor’s orders: Physio cops 9-month touchline ban as 2 players are suspended, club lose point over game abandoned after violence

A physio who reportedly hospitalized an opposition fan by running onto the pitch to punch them during a chaotic mass brawl that marred a football match in France last month has been banned for nine months.

Marseille medic Pablo Fernandez appeared to charge onto the pitch at Nice, thump an encroaching supporter in the chest and back off after the man sank to the turf during the riotous scene that caused the home side's match with Fernandez's team to be abandoned on August 22.

The physio has been handed the most severe punishment of the sanctions handed out following the carnage, and has been ordered not to enter the referee's locker room or carry out any 'official functions' until June 30 2022.

Marseille defender Alvaro Gonzalez, who has been accused of provoking fans, has been given a two-match suspension, and the player who sparked the mass brawl, Dimitri Payet, has landed a suspended one-match ban.

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Violence marred the French league match between Nice and Marseille. © Twitter / AFP
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Marseille midfielder Payet threw a bottle that was lobbed at him back into the stands, although few could have foreseen the violence that subsequently erupted, including accusations that Payet, Luan Peres and Matteo Guendouzi, who is on loan to Marseille from Arsenal, were left with scars following fan assaults.

Nice returned to the pitch with a 1-0 lead, but Marseille's squad refused to come back out and the game was abandoned in the 75th minute.

Les Aiglons were ordered to close their south stand for four matches and a man was arrested after an incident that is certain to gain infamy in French sporting history.

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Ugly scenes marred the match between Nice and Marseille. © AFP
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Under the Ligue de Football Professionnel's disciplinary ruling, the match will be played behind closed doors at a neutral venue, and Nice will be required to play three games without supporters present.

Christophe Galtier's side have been docked a point, with a further one-point deduction suspended.

The boss of last season's surprise champions, Lille, has led Nice to an unbeaten start to the season that had put them fourth in the table after three games.

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There were riotous scenes when Nice and Marseille met in the French Ligue 1 © Eric Gaillard / Reuters
French side Nice ordered to close south stand amid investigation into violent scenes which marred Ligue 1 clash with Marseille

They will drop a place as a result of the ruling, sending them below Marseille, who they had been level on points with.

Nice beat Bordeaux 4-0 in the league on August 28 in their only home game so far without fans.

More than 32,000 people had been in the Allianz Riviera stadium when the shocking scrap that has led to their point deduction took place.

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Trouble erupted when Nice played Marseille in France © Eric Gaillard / Reuters
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