|AFP - West Ham's Israeli manager Avram Grant|
LONDON, April 4, 2011 (AFP) - West Ham manager Avram Grant has been handed a two-match touchline ban and fined 6,000 pounds (6,800 euros) for comments made about match official Mike Jones, the Football Association (FA) confirmed on Monday.
An Independent Regulatory Commission found the former Chelsea and Portsmouth boss guilty of improper conduct relating to comments made to the media in the aftermath of the Hammers' 2-1 FA Cup quarter-final defeat to Stoke on March 13.
Grant's ban will commence with immediate effect and means he will miss the Premier League clashes at Bolton this weekend and at home to Aston Villa the following week.
The Israeli claimed that his side should have been awarded a second-half penalty.
Grant hit out at referee Jones' handling of the second half, which began with Stoke being awarded a penalty just 13 seconds after the restart.
Matthew Etherington missed the spot-kick but Grant felt that Jones had been swayed by the home fans after Frederic Piquionne appeared to handle in the lead-up to the Hammers' opener in the first half.
Grant was charged with improper conduct for the comments on the same day that Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson was given a five-match touchline ban and a £30,000 fine for his verbal attack on referee Martin Atkinson at Chelsea in February.
Speaking at the time, Grant argued that fellow managers will stop giving honest answers if they continue to be reprimanded by governing bodies and echoed Ferguson's comments that "football is the only industry you can't tell the truth in".