Scotland internationalist Liam Kelly has been hit with a six-match ban for shoving a ball boy.
Liam Kelly pushed the 17-year-old ball boy to the ground during the League Two clash between the midfielder’s Leyton Orient and Plymouth Argyle.
The O’s had won a corner in the 86th minute as they trailed 2-1 at Home Park. The ball boy had retrieved the ball and was set to throw it towards the corner flag when Kelly pushed him with both hands.
Kelly had already been yellow carded but escaped a second caution as Orient went on to score twice, securing a crucial three points in their fight to escape relegation to the fifth tier National League.
However the London club will have to make do without their captain for half a dozen games.
The 27-year-old denied the violent conduct charge at a hearing yesterday but the FA found him guilty and ruled that the normal three-match ban was “insufficient”.
“Leyton Orient’s Liam Kelly has been suspended for six matches with immediate effect following the game at Plymouth Argyle on February 14 2017,” an FA statement read.
“It was alleged he committed an act of violent conduct in the 86th minute which was not seen by the match officials but caught on video, contrary to FA Rule E3.
“Furthermore, The FA claimed that the standard punishment for the offence would be clearly insufficient.
“The player denied both the charge and the claim, however, following an Independent Regulatory Commission hearing on Friday evening [February 17 2017], the case in respect of the charge of violent conduct was found proven.
“Furthermore, the Regulatory Commission considered the standard penalty to be insufficient and ordered he serve an additional three match suspension, resulting in six matches in total.”
Kelly was a key player in the heart of the Killie midfield, playing more than 100 games for the club. He took a starring role in the club’s Scottish League Cup success in 2012 as they defeated Celtic 1-0.
His form at Rugby Park earned him a call-up to the Scotland squad, making his one and only appearance in a 2-1 friendly win over Luxembourg, and then a move to Bristol City.
Injury plagued his career at the Robins, his second season at Ashton gate was all but written off. He moved on to Oldham Athletic where he spent two years before transferring to Leyton Orient during the summer.