Darlington fan banned for misogynistic abuse towards female official

A Darlington fan who hurled misogynistic abuse at female official Emily Carney has been banned from home matches for 12 months.

The supporter was identified by both eye witnesses and video footage following an incident during the first half of the Quakers’ 5-2 National League North victory at Scarborough on January 2.

Away teams, as well as the Football Association and the National League, will also be informed of the sanction.

A statement on the club’s official website said: “Darlington Football Club have banned a supporter for 12 months for shouting misogynist abuse at a female assistant referee during the game at Scarborough on January 2.

“The person concerned was positively identified by eye witnesses and video/media. We thank those supporters and match officials who assisted in this matter and in ‘calling out’ this unacceptable behaviour.

“The club has decided to ban the individual from our home matches for 12 months subject to appeal in accordance with club protocols. We will also be informing the Football Association and the National League and host teams for our away fixtures.”

Referee Dean Watson briefly stopped the game at the Flamingo Land Stadium during the first half after assistant Carney reported the incident and an announcement was made over the public address system, while Darlington issued an apology and an appeal for witnesses.

The official changed sides after the break, but play was suspended for almost 40 minutes after she was subjected to further comments.

Darlington’s statement continued: “Darlington Football Club has made it very clear that it strongly condemns any sort of discriminatory behaviour and we are determined to ‘kick it out’ and provide a friendly and welcoming environment.

“We will not tolerate or condone racist, misogynist, sexist, homophobic or any other form of discriminatory behaviour whether physical or verbal.

“Once again, we apologise to the assistant and referee team, the other match officials, Scarborough Athletic Football Club, the FA and the National League for the unacceptable misconduct of our supporters.

“We urge fans to continue to report unacceptable behaviour to the club.”