Racing hit with year-long ban for Copa del Rey protest against Sociedad

The punishment comes after Los Verdiblancos forced the abandonment of the game at El Sardinero because of a dispute with the club's board over unpaid wages

Racing Santander are to be fined €3,006 (£2467) and banned from next season's Copa del Rey after their players refused to participate in their quarter-final, second-leg clash with Real Sociedad on Thursday.

Los Verdiblancos, who lost the first leg 3-1, took to the field for the return fixture at El Sardinero but decided to go on strike because of a dispute with their employers over unpaid wages, thus forcing the referee to abandon the game after just 40 seconds of action.

They found support from their cheering home fans and also their rivals, as Sociedad's players showed solidarity with handshakes and hugs after the match was called off.

However, the Cantabrian club, racked with debt and now in Spain's Segunda B, now face a fine and will also be prevented from competing in next season's Copa del Rey.

Meanwhile, Real Sociedad meet Barcelona in the semi-finals next week.