A FOOTBALLER who headbutted a referee during a match has been jailed for 12 months.
Scott Quig attacked Dave Clarke when the official was about to show him a red card during a Pedigree/Tag league game between Eton Athletic and Real Medina FC at Eton Park Recreation Ground in Shakespeare Road, Burton.
The 33-year-old, of Harehedge Lane, Burton, appeared at Stafford Crown Court to admit a charge of inflicting grievous bodily harm, leaving the experienced official with a double fracture of the eye socket.It was such a severe injury that Mr Clarke had to be transferred to the Royal Derby Hospital for specialist treatment.
As well as spending a year behind bars, Quig looks set to be banned for life from playing football – with no chance of appealing the punishment for at least 10 years – by the Birmingham County Football Association (FA), which oversee the league in the town.
Mike Pennick, governance and finance manager, told the Mail that this type of violence would 'never be tolerated' in the amateur game.
He said: "What he did has no place, not only in the game, but in society in general.
"We will now be proceeding with taking action against Quig which will see him banned for life – he will not be able to appeal his ban for 10 years.
"On a football pitch we all have seen things that have not gone our way but what happened to Mr Clarke is inexcusable.
"The sentence handed out by the court should go out as a message to everyone who plays football that violence will not be tolerated and the consequences will be severe."
Mr Clarke has been refereeing for 37 years in the area.
After a brief spell spent away from football in the league, recovering from his severe injuries, Mr Clarke has since returned to officiating games across the area.