Plymouth Argyle striker Nick Chadwick has apologised unreservedly for his actions, after being given a six-match suspension by the Football Association.
Chadwick was sent off for violent conduct in the 34th minute of the 4-0 npower League Two defeat away to Port Vale on Saturday. The 30-year-old was dismissed by referee Scott Mathieson, after he consulted fourth official Matthew Bristow, for elbowing Vale's Ashley Vincent.
A similar off-the-ball incident involving the same two players had occurred at the start of the match. From the kick-off, Vincent ended up in a heap on the ground after Chadwick ran past him, although on that occasion none of the match officials spotted any offence.
It is that incident which has led to Chadwick getting a six-match suspension, instead of three, as had been expected.
Chadwick's lengthy suspension was confirmed by the Pilgrims in a statement issued yesterday. It read: "As well as imposing an automatic three-match ban for his red card in the 34th minute of the game, the FA have taken retrospective action, under Law 12, regarding an incident in the first minute of the match and added a further three matches to the suspension.
"Nick regrets his actions which have led to this ban and apologises unreservedly for them. He fully accepts the punishment handed down by the FA. Pre-mediated violent behaviour on the field is totally unacceptable at Plymouth Argyle and, accordingly, Nick has also been separately disciplined by the club."
Argyle chairman James Brent has admitted he learned a valuable lesson about football after taking the "difficult" decision to sack Carl Fletcher as manager.
Fletcher was fired on January 1 after a series of poor results saw the Pilgrims slide into relegation trouble.
Brent stuck by the 32-year-old for longer than many supporters would have done before finally calling time on his managerial reign.
Brent declared: "Carl has put his heart and soul into the club and shown great passion, dedication and single-mindedness. It was probably the most difficult human relations decision I have taken.
"When you communicate something like that and the first thing the person says is 'thank you for the opportunity to manage', it's very difficult to deal with.
"Whereas, in most businesses, you can work with people to improve the areas where they have weakness, you just don't have the luxury of time in football."