Reece James was appointed Chelsea captain in August 2023

Reece James: Chelsea captain given one-match ban and fined £90,000 over tunnel incident

Reece James was appointed Chelsea captain in August 2023Reece James was appointed Chelsea captain in August 2023

Chelsea captain Reece James has been given a one-match suspension and fined £90,000 over an incident in the tunnel after his side’s loss to Aston Villa in September.

The defender admittedexternal-link using “improper, insulting and abusive words and behaviour” towards a match official.

It had previously been reportedexternal-link that the England international confronted referee Jarred Gillett.

The 23-year-old did not feature in the match because of a hamstring injury.

Right-back James picked up a hamstring problem in training last month having struggled with injuries throughout the 2022-23 campaign.

The FA said James had admitted the charge, and the written reasons would be published “at the earliest opportunity”.

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Chelsea were reduced to 10 men against Villa on 24 September as a goal from Ollie Watkins ensured their stuttering start to the season continued.

French defender Malo Gusto was sent off in the 58th minute for dangerous play after the video assistant referee (VAR) encouraged referee Gillett to check the pitchside monitor.

Gusto was initially shown a yellow card for a tackle on Villa defender Lucas Digne by Gillett, but the official upgraded it to a red.

The Blues are 11th in the Premier League, having won just two of their first seven league matches under new manager Mauricio Pochettino.

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