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Arsenal’s Gabriel Paulista handed one-match ban for improper conduct

The Arsenal defender Gabriel Paulista has been banned for one match and fined £10,000 as punishment for “improper conduct” following last weekend’s dismissal at Chelsea, even though the red card has been rescinded.

An independent regulatory commission ruled on Friday that Gabriel was guilty of failing to leave the pitch promptly after being sent off by Mike Dean for seemingly kicking out at the Chelsea striker Diego Costa.

Gabriel Paulista

Gabriel has been sanctioned for his reaction after being shown a red card against Chelsea. Photograph: Adam Davy/PA

Arsenal successfully appealed earlier in the week against Dean’s decision on the grounds that Gabriel had not made any contact with Costa, with the club also producing evidence to back up their claim that the striker had provoked Gabriel. Chelsea’s manager, José Mourinho, said that overturning the dismissal was tantamount to permitting retaliation.

It is Gabriel’s behaviour after the red card that has resulted in Friday’s suspension as, rather than leave the pitch immediately, the outraged defender stayed to protest against the referee’s decision. Arsenal must now plan without Gabriel for Saturday’s Premier League match at Leicester City. Arsène Wenger seemed to be expecting such an outcome when he said on Friday morning: “I will accept their judgment. If there is no punishment, we are a bit lucky. If there is a punishment, I have to take it.” – the guardian-

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