Olivier Giroud will be sidelined for two matches as Serie A responds to his verbal outburst directed at officials following AC Milan’s dramatic 2-2 draw against Lecce, the league announced on Tuesday.
After being initially booked for dissent, France striker Giroud saw a red card in stoppage time at Stadio Via del Mare on Saturday for directing “abusive expressions” at referee Rosario Abisso.
Giroud, who boasts eight goals this season, was handed a straight red card and is slated to be absent for the upcoming home clashes against Fiorentina and Frosinone after the international break.
Referee Abisso found himself amid controversy as Lecce’s impressive comeback from a two-goal deficit was halted. Shortly after Giroud’s sending-off, Roberto Piccoli unleashed what appeared to be a spectacular winning goal from afar.
However, the goal was cancelled out as Piccoli was found to have stood on Malick Thiaw’s foot just before receiving the ball.
The call provoked outrage in the once euphoric stands, infuriating club president Saverio Sticchi Damiani, as well as Lecce’s players and coaching staff.
Saverio Sticchi Damiani is handed a ban until December 4 for his “intimidatory behaviour towards match officials” and issuing threats in the dressing rooms post the match.
He hinted at a conspiracy, accusing Abisso and the VAR officials of excessively nitpicking to find a way to rule out the goal.
Stefano Trinchera, the club’s sporting director, is handed a three-match ban and a 10,000 euros ($10,900) fine for similar offenses, aggravated by “blasphemy,” while CEO Sandro Mencucci is suspended until November 27.
The reprieve from defeat did little to lift Milan’s spirits, as Stefano Pioli’s side found themselves trailing local rivals Inter Milan, the league leaders, by eight points.