CONCACAF bans McKennie, Dest for Gold Cup games they were skipping anyway
MIAMI (AP) — American midfielder Weston McKennie and defender Sergino Dest were suspended by soccer's governing body for North and Central America and the Caribbean from games they weren't scheduled to play in, a result of their ejections from the Nations League semifinal against Mexico.
CONCACAF said Friday that McKennie must serve a four-game suspension and Dest a three-game ban as a result of on-field conduct during the June 15 game. Mexican defender Cesar Montes also was given a four-match suspension and defender Gerardo Arteaga was given a three-match ban.
Dest and McKennie are not on the roster for the CONCACAF Gold Cup, which starts Saturday. The U.S. Soccer Federation on June 12 announced a mostly junior varsity roster for the tournament, and the USSF said those games will count toward the suspension.
Montes and Arteaga are on Mexico's Gold Cup roster.
CONCACAF's discipline statement did not mention the homophobic chants by Mexican supporters that caused Salvadoran referee Ivan Barton to end the June 15 match early. CONCACAF said after the game that it "strongly condemns the discriminatory chanting" and "will make a further statement in short order."
CONCACAF general secretary Philippe Moggio did not respond to an email from The Associated Press seeking comment.
All four players received automatic one-game suspensions as a result of their second-half red cards, which resulted from rough play that led to pushing and shoving and McKennie's jersey getting torn. CONCACAF said the penalties were based on Nations League regulations and FIFA's disciplinary code, but did not cite specific provisions.
CONCACAF also fined the USSF and the Mexican Football Federation, but did not announce the amount. It threatened "more severe sanctions could be taken should incidents occur during their upcoming matches."
In addition, CONCACAF said its appeals committee upheld the decision of the disciplinary committee to kick out Nicaragua from the Gold Cup for using an ineligible player in eight games. CONCACAF has not identified the player.
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