Ex-Crawley boss John Yems banned for THREE YEARS as FA win appeal to extend suspension after racism charges | The Sun

FORMER Crawley boss John Yems has had his racism ban DOUBLED after the FA successfully argued the original 17-month suspension was too lenient.

It means Yems, 63, has now been booted out of football for three years and cannot return until January 5 2026.

An FA spokesperson, who “welcomed” the verdict, said: “This is the longest ever ban issued to a participant in English football for discrimination.

"We strongly disagreed with their original sanction, as well as some of the elements of their judgement, which we fundamentally believed were not appropriate for the severity of the offences committed by John Yems.”

A three-man independent commission in January found that Yems was “not consciously racist” when he abused non-white players at the Sussex club.

Yems admitted one charge and was found guilty of 11 other offences of racist abuse with the commission ruling he had used “offensive, racist and Islamophobic” language as “banter” – including joking that one Muslim player was a terrorist.


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Yems also suggested that two black players were “more used to blowpipes than a game of darts” and repeatedly described one Asian player as a “curry-muncher”.

Despite agreeing that Yems “paid no regard to the distress” caused, the panel “accepted” that he was “not a conscious racist”.

But FA chief executive Mark Bullingham went public with his unhappiness over the ruling and after consulting with lawyers Wembley chiefs appealed for the punishment to be reviewed by a second panel.

And the appeal board, headed by Christopher Quinlan KC, determined that “some of the words and expressions used were inherently and obviously racist”.

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Ruling that the initial “not consciously racist” decision was “an unreasonable factual finding”. it added: “One simply knows not how it can reasonably be said that any person who uses any of those deeply offensive expressions is not aware that his comments are, objectively, racist.

“All of the evidence and findings are inconsistent with the conclusion that Yems was not aware that his comments were, objectively, racist and wholly offensive.” 

The FA spokesperson added: “This is a deeply distressing case for the victims involved, and we hope that the outcome of this appeal will help to bring some closure. 

“We also hope that this will encourage anyone who has experienced or witnessed discrimination in the game to report it.

“Everyone should be able to play the game in an environment that is free from discrimination and know that they can trust those who occupy positions of responsibility and power to lead a safe and positive culture, free from harm.

“Where discrimination happens, we will always use our very best efforts to ensure the right sanctions are imposed and, where appropriate, education is available to shift mindsets and continually improve the culture of football."

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