Barrow AFC manager Mark Cooper has been hit with an EIGHT game touchline ban.

The Football Association have today announced that Cooper has also been fined £3,000 and ordered to take an education course over an incident in last August's home game against Exeter City.

An independent commission found that Cooper had "used abusive and/or insulting words" which "included a reference, whether express or implied, to gender".

Barrow have responded to the news by saying they will consider an appeal once they receive the full written reasons.

They added that Cooper is "disappointed" by the decision.

As it stands it means the 53-year-old will have to operate away from the dugout for more than half of the Bluebirds' remaining League Two fixtures - starting with this weekend's trip to Exeter.

The FA statement said: "Barrow AFC’s Mark Cooper has been banned from the touchline for eight games, fined £3,000 and ordered to attend a face-to-face education course for a breach of FA Rule E3 that occurred during their EFL League Two game against Exeter City FC on Tuesday 17 August 2021.

"It was alleged that the manager used abusive and/or insulting words in the 91st minute, which are contrary to FA Rule E3.1, and that these words constitute an “aggravated breach”, as defined in FA Rule E3.2 as they included a reference, whether express or implied, to gender. 

"Mark Cooper denied these allegations but an independent Regulatory Commission subsequently found them to be proven and imposed his sanctions, which remain subject to appeal, after reviewing the available evidence.

"The written reasons for their decisions will be published in due course."

Barrow issued their own statement in light of the news.

It said: "The club is aware of the decision made by the FA Regulatory Commission in the case of our manager, Mark Cooper.

"Mark is obviously disappointed by the decision.

"Neither he nor the club have yet received the reasons for the decision, which will be considered with a view to appeal in due course."