IRISH LEAGUE: Ban reduced to three games for Glentoran star Novo

Glentoran's Nacho Novo. Pic by PressEye Ltd.
Glentoran's Nacho Novo. Pic by PressEye Ltd.

Nacho Novo can play a part in the closing games of Glentoran’s season following a reduction of his six-game ban to three.

A successful appeal by the Belfast club has led to Novo having his initial suspension split between three games and the rest suspended.

The former Glasgow Rangers star was dismissed for an “attempted head-butt” during the game against Crusaders on January 14.

Glentoran’s appeal was built around the defence that “the referee had made an obvious error” in dismissing Novo “under Article 1.9 of the Disciplinary Code”.

The ban comes into effect from Monday, ruling Novo out of Glentoran’s push for European football in games against Ballinamallard United, Dungannon Swifts and Carrick Rangers.

Novo will be available for home fixtures with Portadown and Ards.

A statement from the Irish Football Association, released on Wednesday, confirmed the following:

“The Disciplinary Committee heard a challenge from Glentoran FC this evening regarding the dismissal of Nacho Novo for an attempted head-butt on 14 January 2017.

“The club’s case was that the referee had made an obvious error in dismissing Mr Novo under Article 1.9 of the Disciplinary Code.

“Having considered submissions from the club, the refereeing team and having viewed the video footage, the committee were not satisfied that an obvious error had occurred.

“However, in the circumstances, the committee decided to apply the provisions of Article 16.7 and suspend half of the sanction for a period of 6 months.

“Mr Novo must serve a 3 match suspension commencing Monday, 3 April 2017.

“The club has the right of appeal under Article 14 of the Articles of Association.”