Leonardo handed nine-month ban

The 43-year-old was issued with the suspension on Thursday after he was adjudged to have "deliberately barged" referee Alexandre Castro earlier this month. The club will appeal
Paris Saint-Germain CEO Leonardo has been slapped with a nine-month ban by the Professional Football League (LFP) for his part in the fracas which followed the 1-1 draw with Valenciennes earlier this month.

The sporting director, 43, is now forbidden from sitting on the bench, going into the referee's dressing room and attending league meetings, however he can go into the team's dressing room and can still negotiate transfers.

The ban will apply to domestic games and therefore will not affect Champions League encounters.

The Ligue 1 winners were also handed a three-point suspension, which will come into force at any stage next season should another of their club officials become embroiled in a similar case.

The former Brazil international, whose suspension started on May 8 and will end on February 8, 2014, appeared to barge referee Alexandre Castro in the tunnel at Parc de Princes on May 5.

The official club website have issued a statement which they describe the ban as "unjustified and extremely harsh".

The statement read: "Paris Saint-Germain have taken note of the decision of the LFP Disciplinary Committee to suspend Leonardo, the team's sporting director, for a nine-month period and to sanction the club with a conditional withdrawal of three points.

"In light of the material elements submitted to the members of the Disciplinary Committee, PSG consider this decision to be unjustified and extremely harsh. As a result, and in solidarity with its sporting director, PSG will appeal this decision."