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Kettering Town’s Michael McGrath faces an extraordinary 35-game ban after triple indiscretion

Within the heat of the moment during a football match, a player can often say or do something that they later regret.

It may even lead to a red card and subsequent associated ban for the player’s actions.

So to be punished on more than two separate occasions and to end up with bans totalling 35 games is something of a feat. That’s precisely the fate that has befallen non-league Kettering Town player, Michael McGrath, however.

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There were three charges against him, all of which were denied but were later proven, leading to the ban and fines totalling £1,550 according to the Northamptonshire Telegraph.

One incident came in the 3-0 defeat at Leamington in the fourth round of the Buildbase FA Trophy on January 19.

McGrath is alleged to have an altercation with the referee who sent him off.

The FA’s charge sheet read as follows, and meant a 21-game ban and a £750 fine:

“1. It is alleged that in or around the 11th minute of the fixture the participant used abusive and/or insulting words towards the match referee, contrary to Rule E3.1.

“Further, or alternatively, it is alleged that this breach of FA Rule E3.1 is an “aggravated breach” as defined in Rule E3.2, as it included a reference to disability.

Non-League

“2. It is alleged that following the participant’s dismissal, the participant’s language and/or behaviour towards the match referee was abusive and/or insulting, contrary to Rule E3.1. It is alleged that this breach of FA Rule E3.1 is an “aggravated breach” as defined in Rule E3.2, as it included a reference to sexual orientation.

“3. It is alleged that following the participant’s dismissal, the participant’s language and/or behaviour towards the match referee was threatening.

“4. It is alleged that following the participant’s dismissal from the field of play, the participant’s language and/or behaviour in or around the tunnel area amounts to improper conduct, contrary to Rule E3.1.”

If that weren’t bad enough, another incident occurred after Kettering’s 1-1 draw with Guiseley.

“It is alleged that in the hospitality suite at Kettering Town Football Club following the above fixture, the participant used abusive and/or insulting language towards a match official, contrary to Rule E3.1.

“It is further alleged that this breach of Rule E3.1 is an “aggravated breach”, as defined in Rule E3.2, as the language included a reference to sexual orientation.”

That meant another 10-game ban and a £600 fine, with a four-match suspension and £200 fine for McGrath’s third incident that came just four days later at Hereford.

“1. It is alleged that in or around the 70th minute, the participant’s language towards a match official was abusive and/or insulting.

“2. It is alleged that following the participant’s dismissal, the participant’s behaviour in/around the dugout amounts to improper conduct.”

He’ll be lucky if he still has a career to go back to at this rate.