Slavia Prague defender Ondrej Kudela has been banned for 10 matches by Uefa after being found guilty of racist behaviour towards Rangers player Glen Kamara.
Kamara claimed Kudela called him a “f****** monkey”, something Kudela denied.
Slavia said in a statement: “We respect the decision. In any case, Ondrej Kudela should not have approached the opposition player. I deeply regret that and apologize to Glen Kamara for a situation that has clearly caused distress to him and his teammates, as well as everyone associated with Slavia and Rangers. I am taking positive steps to prevent such a situation from happening in our club ever again.”
Kamara’s account was supported by his Rangers teammate Bongani Zungu and Uefa’s control, ethics, and disciplinary body has found Kudela guilty of using racist language.
Kudela’s ban applies to ‘UEFA club and representative team competition matches’, meaning he will miss his side’s quarter-final second leg with Arsenal on Thursday night, and the rest of the campaign.
Rangers said they welcomed Kudela’s ban. “This not only vindicates Glen Kamara’s evidence but underlines the severity of the comment,” a statement said. But the club criticised as “severe” suspensions given to Kamara and Kemar Roofe, banned for four games after a red card for a high-boot challenge on Ondrej Kolar which left the Slavia goalkeeper with a fractured skull.
Depending on how far they go, he may also be ruled out of the Czech Republic’s entire European Championship campaign – where his country are due to play Scotland in Glasgow, as well as England and Croatia.
Kamara has also been banned for three matches after being found guilty of assaulting Kudela in the tunnel after the game.
The Uefa body’s full written reasons will be published at a later stage.