Euro 2020: Austria striker Marko Arnautovic gets one-match ban for insulting North Macedonian player-

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Austria forward Marko Arnautovic is being banned for one match at the European Championship for insulting a North Macedonian opponent in their opening Euro 2020 match on Sunday. Austria will be without forward Marko Arnautovic for Thursday’s Euro 2020 Group C match against the Netherlands.

Marko Arnautovic celebrates with his teammates (Courtesy: AP)

HIGHLIGHTS

  • UEFA Appeals Body said that it had suspended Arnautovic for one game
  • Arnautovic won’t be available for Austria against Netherlands
  • Arnautovic was accused by North Macedonian soccer federation of insulting Alioski

Austria forward Marko Arnautovic will miss his team’s Euro 2020 Group C match against the on Thursday in Amsterdam after he was banned for one match at the European Championship for insulting a North Macedonian opponent.

The UEFA Appeals Body said on Wednesday it had suspended Arnautovic for one game for “insulting” another player.

He was accused by the North Macedonian soccer federation of insulting Ezgjan Alioski. Alioski’s family roots are Albanian. Arnautovic’s father is Serbian and his mother is Austrian.

Arnautovi could have been banned for 10 games if UEFA had found his comments to be racist or insulting based on ethnic origin.

The incident flared after Arnautovi scored Austria’s third goal in a 3-1 victory over North Macedonia on Sunday in Bucharest, Romania. He later apologized on Instagram for “some heated words” and said he was not a racist.

Foda said Arnautovi “overreacted” after being provoked by North Macedonian players. He did not elaborate.

Alioski later said he had not heard what Arnautovi said in Serbian. That left it unclear how UEFA could prove a charge of racism or ethnic discrimination.

Tensions between North Macedonians and ethnic Albanians in the small Balkan country erupted in 2001 when Albanians took up arms and fought with government forces, demanding more rights.

The conflict ended after seven months with a deal that granted more rights to Albanians.

Serbia does not recognise the independence of its former province Kosovo, while there is historic tension between Serbia and North Macedonia.

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