Tuesday, June 18, 2024
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Outspoken East Thurrock official banned by FA

EAST Thurrock United FC secretary Neil Speight has been found guilty of two charges of misconduct relating to incidents that happened at the Ryman Premier League club’s match at Billericay Town on Saturday, 24 October.

Speight appeared before a hearing at Wembley today (Thursday) where he disputed the two charges but they were found to be proved.

The secretary was banned from football administration for two matches, fined £150 with £75 costs and forfeited the £100 cost of the hearing.

YT understands that Mr Speight called the official an "Oaf, buffoon and joker"

The penalties were the minimum allowed once the cases had been proved and panel chairman Barry Bright paid tribute to Speight’s previous service to football.

Speaking after the hearing Speight, 57, a father of two from Stanford-le-Hope and editor of the Enquirer newspaper group, said: “Obviously I am disappointed to receive this verdict but I have no complaints with it as I admitted part culpability for the circustances that occured and that admission, while helping clear my name in many ways, left the panel with little choice to find me ‘guilty.’

“They said they did so with some regret and they gave me the minimum punishment possible, which is some consolation.

“At the end of the day those of us involved in the administration of football have a duty of care for the game and I accept that my comments and actions to the match officials at Billericay did overstep the mark of what is acceptable and I have no issue with accepting my punishment which I think was fair, particularly bearing in mind it could have been a heck of a lot more money and a suspension that would have effectively put me out of the game for a very long time.

“I am grateful for a fair and balanced judgement on the day and while there is no such thing as vindication in being found guilty I think the level of retribution puts what I did absolutely in context and I am grateful the panel recognised my commitment and service to the game we all love.”

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