Since the start of the 2005-2006 Foster’s National League thirteen weeks ago on October 22nd the Cayman Islands Football Association has already had to suspend several of its members (team officials and players) for incidents on the field ranging from accumulation of yellow cards to ‘violent conduct.’
Considering the increase in ‘certain unacceptable behaviours’ recorded over the past few seasons the Association has made the not too difficult decision to begin publishing its disciplinary rulings on a weekly basis.
‘Our intention is not to embarrass anyone,’ says CIFA Disciplinary Committee Chairman Lascelles Johnson, ‘but to discourage serious and persistent misconduct while at the same time making the public and members aware that certain unacceptable behaviours will not be tolerated.’
He said that going forward all suspensions awarded for poor behaviour on the field of play by CIFA’s Disciplinary Committee would be published.
‘Players and team officials must realize that their actions have consequences, particularly when it concerns abuse of match officials or fellow football players.’
With nineteen weeks to go it is important to send a resounding message.
CIFA members for that matter have always known that certain types of behaviour are deemed unacceptable on the field of Play. CIFA issues both their Competition Rules and Disciplinary Procedures to all their members at the start of each season. The Disciplinary Procedures is a document which closely follows the patterns of FIFA’s own Disciplinary Code with adjustments for local circumstances.
Some of the more standard suspensions include 1 match automatic suspension for a red card, 2 matches automatic suspension for spitting or serious foul play, 3 matches automatic suspension for violent conduct, 1 match suspension if a player accumulates 3 yellow cards before his team has completed 5 matches in the season and 3 match suspension if a player has accumulated 5 yellow cards over a period covering his team’s last five matches.
Players receiving three or more red cards during any one season, are compelled to sit out the remainder of that season and are placed on probation for twelve months. The Committee also has the authority to amend suspensions further, based on whatever special circumstances surround incidents.
‘When members think that they can get away with small things they will move on to more violent and unacceptable behavior on the field. Over the last three or so seasons we have seen a noticeable increase in foul language, dangerous tackles, fighting and other violent behavior during and in the vicinity of matches.’
CIFA has vowed to take a more resolute stand when it comes to suspending and fining players and their clubs for unacceptable behaviour on the field.