UEFA overturn Caulker suspension but UPHOLD Ince ban for scuffles in Serbia despite Young Lions suffering racist abuse
20:20 GMT, 15 February 2013
23:14 GMT, 15 February 2013
Steven Caulker is free to play at Euro 2013 after UEFA overturned the two-game ban he was given in the wake of England Under 21s' controversial game in Serbia.
But there were mixed feelings for head coach Stuart Pearce, as Tom Ince's one-match suspension was upheld following a lengthy disciplinary hearing at UEFA's headquarters in Nyon.
The hearing stemmed from UEFA president Michel Platini appealing against the severity of the punishment that Serbia were given after their fans racially abused several of England's black players during a Euro 2013 play-off in Krusevac last October.
Appeal: Tom Ince's one-game ban was upheld (left) but Steven Caulker's two-game ban was overturned (right)
Serbia survived the threat of expulsion from the 2015 European Under 21 Championship but they will have to play two qualifiers behind closed doors, rather than the one match they were initially ordered to, and the fine of
65,900 administered before Christmas was unaltered.
Pearce said: 'We respect UEFA's
decision and we move on. We welcome the verdict on Steven Caulker's
suspension and choose to accept the verdict with regards to Tom Ince.
Both players should be proud of the way represented themselves to UEFA.'
Europe's governing body had the
capacity to increase the lengths of bans Caulker and Ince were going to
serve had they deemed the appeals to be frivolous.
They were looking to impose a
three-match ban on Tottenham defender Caulker, a two-game suspension for
Ince and hit the Football Association with a 50,000 fine for failing
to control their players.
Sickening: Caulker is led away by Pearce after the incidents, which saw Serbia fined for racist abuse
Shocking: Serbia assistant coach Dejan Govedarica tries to keep players apart in the fiery clash
Fury: Marvin Sordell reacts to the violent scenes, which left the FA bewildered by England player sanctions
However, Caulker, Ince and Pearce all
conveyed the extreme circumstances that England faced at the end of a
game they won 1-0 thanks to a goal from Connor Wickham.
As a result, there was no fine for
the FA and while Ince, who is understood to be disappointed, will sit
out the game against Italy on June 5, Caulker is free to play in the
His only punishment for his
involvement in the melee that erupted after Wickham's last-minute
goal is one day's community service.
The post-match brawl began after
England defender Danny Rose complained of monkey chants whenever he
touched the ball. He was sent off after the final whistle for after
kicking a ball into the stands, gesturing to the crowd as he walked off