Manchester City Bacary Sagna has failed in an appeal against the £40,000 fine handed to him by the Football Association following posts made on social media.
The Frenchman was stung by English football’s governing body after taking to Instagram in the wake of a 2-1 victory over Burnley.
He wrote: “10 against 12.. but still fighting and winning as a team.”
His comments were considered to have been aimed at referee Lee Mason, with the match official having shown Fernandinho a red card during a keenly-fought Premier League fixture.
Sagna later changed the post to: “Still fighting and winning as a team.”
The 33-year-old was, however, judged to have breached FA regulations regarding media comments and, despite City’s claims that the sanction handed out was unduly harsh, the punishment stands.
A statement released by the FA read: “Bacary Sagna’s appeal against his £40,000 fine for breaching FA Rules on media comments has been unsuccessful.
“The player, who was also warned as to his future conduct, contested the sanction set down by an Independent Regulatory Commission after it heard he admitted making a comment which questioned the integrity of the match official and/or alleged and/or implied bias on the part of the match official, and/or brought the game into disrepute, contrary to Rule E3 (1).
“However, an Appeal Board dismissed this appeal and the original sanction remains in place.”