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Sports

AFP
March 14, 2018

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Besiktas defender risks jail over referee rant

ISTANBVUL: Turkish international defender Caner Erkin, who plays for Istanbul side Besiktas, risks up to two years in jail over an expletive-strewn rant at a referee last year, reports said Tuesday.

Istanbul prosecutors have charged Erkin with insulting an official responsible for public order and asked for between one to two years in jail for the player, the official Anadolu news agency reported. The incident took place in a match on October 23 between Besiktas and title rivals Basaksehir of Istanbul when referee Mete Kalkavan showed Erkin a yellow card. The player has denied the charges. Erkin, 29, renowned as a hardman, moved towards Kalkavan gesticulating and shouting vulgar insults at him.

The incident sparked renewed controversy over Erkin, seen as highly talented since his youth and who has had stints at CSKA Moscow and Inter Milan. There has been growing exasperation over the antics of Erkin, with calls mounting on the Turkish Football Federation (TFF) to crack down on the player. But it’s extremely unusual for a legal case to be opened against a player for his behaviour on the pitch. Anadolu said that hearings would begin in the next days.

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