RSL manager Petke gets 3-game ban, $25K fine

Leagues, Leagues Cup, Major League Soccer, Real Salt Lake, Story
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A cat took to the pitch and got a touch on the ball in the Leagues Cup match between Real Salt Lake and Tigres.

Major League Soccer announced on Tuesday that Real Salt Lake head coach Mike Petke will be suspended three games and be fined $25,000 following his altercation last week with referees in a loss to Tigres in a Leagues Cup match.

Petke, who was already suspended for last Saturday’s match against FC Dallas, will sit out RSL’s match against New York City FC on Saturday and against Sporting Kansas City on Aug. 10.

“There is absolutely no place for this type of behavior in our society, and Major League Soccer does not tolerate the repugnant language used by Mr. Petke,” MLS Commissioner Don Garber said. “All MLS players, staff and fans must know that these comments are unacceptable, and I am extremely disappointed that a leader of one of our clubs used such insensitive language. We are committed to providing an environment in which all individuals are treated with dignity and respect at all times.”

Petke received a red card after shouting at the officiating crew at the end of the match against Liga MX side Tigres. Petke said he had been trying to get his players off the pitch after a contentious conclusion to the game.

“I’m pulling five of my players away and I’m talking to my players,” Petke said after the 1-0 loss. “He [referee John Pitti] must have thought I was talking to him and then afterward I told him what I felt.”

Additionally, Petke must attend anger management, sensitivity and diversity training.

Real Salt Lake also mandated two weeks of no contact with the team by Petke, per a source.

As the incident occured in a match of the Leagues Cup — a new tournament featuring MLS and Liga MX sides — Petke will also face a three-match ban if RSL participate in that competion in the future.

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