Arsenal were handed a suspended £25,000 fine by the Football Association (FA) after their players over-celebrated a winning goal against Bournemouth in December. The Gunners were warned that any further breaches of the FA’s rules on excessive celebration would result in the fine being imposed.
The incident occurred in the dying moments of Arsenal’s 3-1 victory over Bournemouth at the Emirates Stadium on December 28. After Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang scored the decisive goal, several Arsenal players ran to the corner flag and celebrated with the fans.
The FA took a dim view of the incident and charged Arsenal with a breach of Rule E20, which states that “participants must not engage in any celebration which is excessive, prolonged or choreographed”.
Arsenal were quick to accept the charge and apologised for their actions. They also agreed to a “voluntary and proactive” education programme for their players and staff, which will be overseen by the FA.
The club’s statement read: “We accept the charge and the associated sanction and will continue to work with the FA to ensure that our players and staff are aware of their responsibilities in this regard.”
The FA’s decision to impose a suspended fine was welcomed by Arsenal, who had feared a more severe punishment. The club had already been fined £20,000 earlier in the season for a similar incident involving Mesut Ozil and Sead Kolasinac.
The FA’s decision to take a lenient approach is likely to be seen as a victory for Arsenal, who have been vocal in their criticism of the governing body in recent months.
The incident was the latest in a series of flashpoints between the two parties, with Arsenal having been critical of the FA’s handling of the Granit Xhaka incident in October.
The FA’s decision to impose a suspended fine is a sign that they are willing to take a more lenient approach to such incidents in the future. It is also a reminder to all clubs that excessive celebration is not tolerated and that any further breaches of the rules will be met with a more severe punishment.