DONCASTER ROVERS: John Ryan is fined £3,000 by FA

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DONCASTER Rovers’ chairman John Ryan has paid the price for his post-match verbal attack on the officials in charge of the home game against Portsmouth at the Keepmoat Stadium last month.

The millionaire businessman, who made a personal appeal, was fined £3,000 plus costs, and given a warning as to his future conduct by the Football Association in Manchester yesterday.

“I can’t say too much about what happened except to say that I was given a fair hearing during the two-hour meeting and I used all the technology at my disposal to highlight seven incidents in the second half where I thought the officials got it wrong,” Ryan told The Star last night.

“I felt that I had a good case because everyone watching television footage could see what had happened. I thought referee Mick Russell had a good first half but I felt that he lost it in the second.

“Although they could have fined me a lot more I’m bitterly disappointed with the FA’s decision because it leaves a stain on my character which I don’t think that I deserve.”

Ryan said that he would have to be more circumspect in future, but added that he would continue to talk to the media following games.

Ryan, who always wears his heart on his sleeve when it comes to Rovers, claimed that none of Pompey’s goals in the 4-3 win which condemned the South Yorkshire club to League One football, should have been allowed to stand and branded the officials an ‘absolute disgrace.’

He said that the second half performance of referee Mick Russell, who he called an ‘idiot’ was the worst that he had seen in 50 years of watching football and claimed that Portsmouth’s 59th minute penalty, which also led to centre-back Habib Beye being sent-off at a time when Rovers led 2-0, should not have been given as the tackle was made outside the box.

But it was Pompey’s two late goals, which saw them overturn a 3-2 deficit, which really stoked up Ryan’s anger.

“Everyone could see that there was a clear handball for their third and a foul (on Sam Hird) for their fourth.” he argued on the day.