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Football | Champions League

Shakhtar's Adriano banned, club apologise



Shakhtar Donetsk striker Luiz Adriano has been banned for one game for unsporting behaviour during a Champions League match against Nordsjaelland last week, Uefa said on Tuesday.

Brazilian Luiz Adriano scored a goal as his team tried to play the ball back to the Danish side's goalkeeper following an injury to a Nordsjaelland player.

"The Uefa Control and Disciplinary Body today decided to suspend Luiz Adriano for one match," Uefa said in a statement on its website (www.uefa.com).

"Luiz Adriano had been charged with violation of the principles of conduct during last week's Uefa Champions League Group E match against FC Nordsjaelland in Copenhagen."

Shakhtar said in a statement they backed the Uefa decision and were deeply disappointed by the incident during the game on November 20.

"Shakhtar Donetsk strongly believes that fair play is a fundamental part of football," the club said.

"Our players fully understand that they are role models for Shakhtar's young fans and the entire football community as a whole, and such actions on their part are not acceptable."

The controversy erupted after play was re-started with an uncontested drop ball following treatment to an injured Nordsjaelland player.

Shakhtar midfielder Willian attempted to return it to the Nordsjaelland defence but Luiz Adriano pounced on the pass, rounded the goalkeeper and finished into an empty net.

His effort led to an angry reaction from the Nordsjaelland players and was greeted with jeers and whistles from the incredulous home crowd.

Any thoughts the Danes might have had of being allowed to score unopposed were dashed when Taras Stepanenko dispossessed Nicolai Stokholm as he advanced on goal from the ensuing kickoff.

Luiz Adriano, who went on to score a hat-trick in Shakhtar's 5-2 victory over Nordsjaelland, will miss their final Group E match at home to Juventus next week.

Ukraine's Shakhtar have already qualified for the Champions League knockout stages and will be joined by either Juventus or Chelsea, who host Nordsjaelland in their final group game.

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