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18-month Barton ban harsh, Cantona got 9 for kicking a spectator! - Burnley boss Dyche

Burnley manager Sean Dyche believes Joey Barton has been harshly dealt with by the FA.

The 34-year-old midfielder has received an 18-month playing ban after breaching betting rules but Dyche feels it is a bit over the top, considering Manchester United legend Eric Cantona got just nine months for kicking a spectator in 1995.

"He's disappointed and we're disappointed for him. We equally feel it's a bit harsh," he said.

"I don't know how you balance all these things that have happened in football, but one of them when I was a young man was the legend Eric Cantona Kung-Fu-kicking someone. I think he got a nine-month ban.

"We know the rules - don't gamble on football when you're in football - simple as that. And Joey knows that. But the FA made it quite clear that there is no intent on anything other than his own personal gambling. His integrity is intact; nothing about trying to change games, or consorting.

"Eighteen months seems a long time to me, in lieu of some of the things I've seen in the game, but we have to respect their decision and we do. They're obviously showing strength in these individual decisions.

"I can only presume that they're going to move on to the constant cheating in the game now, which I've spoken about for a year or two; constant diving, constant feigning injury, constant falling to the floor. It's at a level it needs to be sorted out.

"If they're looking at these individual cases - rightly so - then I'm sure they're going to move on to the bigger picture and the greater good of the game along with the powers that be at the Premier League and Football League."

Andrew Slevison
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Andrew Slevison

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