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John Yems' Suspension Increased Following Successful Appeal from The FA

After a successful FA appeal, an independent Appeal Board has suspended John Yems from all football and football-related activity up to and including 5 January 2026.

The FA previously brought 16 breaches of FA Rule E3.2 against John Yems. He admitted to one charge and an independent Regulatory Commission found him guilty of eleven of the remaining 15 charges, issuing a 17-month ban.

However, we appealed this on the basis that the sanction was insufficient and the Commission had reached a decision to which no reasonable body could have come to. We fundamentally disagreed with the Commission’s finding that this was not a case of conscious racism.

The Appeal Board upheld the FA’s appeal and imposed a three-year ban. The written reasons regarding this appeal can be found below.

An FA spokesperson said: "We welcome the verdict from the independent Appeal Board to suspend John Yems from all football-related activity until January 2026.

"This is the longest ever ban issued to a participant in English football for discrimination, and follows our decision to appeal and challenge the verdict of the independent Regulatory Commission after the first hearing in January.

"We strongly disagreed with their original sanction, as well as some of the elements of their judgement, which we fundamentally believed were not appropriate for the severity of the offences committed by John Yems.

"We are pleased that the independent Appeal Board ruled that specific findings from the Independent Regulatory Commission were unreasonable, as there were numerous examples of inherent and obvious racist language.

"This is a deeply distressing case for the victims involved, and we hope that the outcome of this appeal will help to bring some closure. We also hope that this will encourage anyone who has experienced or witnessed discrimination in the game to report it.


"Everyone should be able to play the game in an environment that is free from discrimination and know that they can trust those who occupy positions of responsibility and power to lead a safe and positive culture, free from harm.

"Where discrimination happens, we will always use our very best efforts to ensure the right sanctions are imposed and, where appropriate, education is available to shift mindsets and continually improve the culture of football."

The FA v John Yems Appeal Board Decision Written Reasons 2023 Final (PDF)

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