Mexican Club President Receives 1-Year Ban Following Beating of Officials

MEXICO CITY - (Reuters) - The president of Mexican first division team Puebla was banned for one year on Monday after match officials were attacked by security men following a game at the club's stadium eight days ago.

Francisco Bernat who could have been banned for up to 10 years under local rules was also fined 300000 pesos (US$26000) Mexican Football Federation (FMF) general secretary Decio de Maria Serrano told a news conference following a disciplinary hearing.

Referee Manuel Glower said he and his assistants were punched and beaten in their changing rooms by a group of men wearing white shirts sporting the Puebla club badge following the match against champions UNAM at the Cuauhtemoc Stadium.

UNAM won the game 3-2 one of their goals coming from a hotly-disputed penalty.

'Francisco Bernat... has been suspended from all his functions and rights as a director for one year' Serrano said.

The ban means that Bernat famous for his explosive temper cannot enter the playing area or changing rooms or sign documents on behalf of the club.

Relegation-threatened Puebla have also been ordered to play their next two home games behind closed doors.

The incident caused an outcry in Mexico and led to angry protests from match officials.

Referees and assistants at every first division game at the weekend entered the field carrying a banner which read: 'No to verbal and physical violence'.

FMF president Alberto de la Torre said no action would be taken against the match officials for the protest although he did not expect it to happen again.