The FA announces full list of Sunderland and Oxford United sanctions for tunnelgate controversy in statement

The FA have announced the full list of sanctions for Sunderland and Oxford United after the controversial clash between the two sides at the Stadium of Light on Good Friday.

Sunday, 9th May 2021, 5:21 pm
Updated Sunday, 9th May 2021, 5:21 pm

The Black Cats were 3-1 winners in a bad-tempered affair, which saw clashes in the tunnel at half and full time of the fixture.

Oxford United manager Karl Robinson claimed after the game that he would involve the police, though that did not come to pass.

Both clubs have been hit with a fine by the FA, while Robinson and Sunderland assistant Jamie McAllister have been hit with bans.

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Lynden Gooch scores in the Good Friday win over Oxford United

Robinson has a four-game touchline ban, including today's 4-0 win over Burton Albion. That will cover the entirety of their play-off campaign.

McAllister, meanwhile, has been given a three-game stadium ban followed by a further three-game touchline ban.

Sunderland intend to appeal.

An FA statement released to The Echo on Sunday said: "Sunderland AFC and Oxford United FC have been fined £6250 and £7000 respectively following breaches of FA Rule E20 during their EFL League One fixture on Friday 2 April 2021.

"It was alleged both clubs failed to ensure that their players and club officials conducted themselves in an orderly fashion and refrained from provocative behaviour in or around the tunnel area at half time and full time of the fixture.

"Oxford United FC admitted its charge. Sunderland AFC denied its charge but an Independent Regulatory Commission subsequently found it proven and imposed an appropriate sanction.

"Karl Robinson has been suspended from the touchline for four matches and fined £4500 after partially admitting a charge for a breach of FA Rule E3. The Oxford United FC manager admitted his behaviour in or around the tunnel area at full time of the fixture amounted to improper conduct while the independent Regulatory Commission found the violent conduct element of the charge proven.

"Jamie McAllister has been suspended from the ground for three matches along with an additional three matches from the touchline, and fined £3000 following a breach of FA Rule E3.

"The Sunderland AFC coach denied that his behaviour in or around the tunnel area at half time of the fixture amounted to improper and violent conduct but an Independent Regulatory Commission subsequently found it proven and imposed an appropriate sanction."

Speaking after the 1-1 draw with Northampton Town, Sunderland head coach Lee Johnson said: "We have got the opportunity to appeal and our early thought process is that we will.

"Obviously you have to have grounds to appeal and we believe we have, we believe it is unjust, but we have to put our case and our argument forward."

On his ban, Robinson said: "I'm proud of my players and will always back them, as will all of the staff.

"I wanted the police called because of an incident at half time, not of our making, that sparked what happened later.

"Had that happened then events after the final whistle would have been very different.

"I won’t apologise for the staff and players caring and looking after each other but in a very long season it was just one fleeting moment where the passion we all have for this club spilled over.

"As far as we are concerned the incident is now closed."

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