Spitting duo Evans and Cisse handed long suspensions

Cisse admitted spitting at Evans
Cisse admitted spitting at Evans

Manchester United defender Jonny Evans has been handed a six-match suspension by the Football Association after being found guilty of spitting at Newcastle striker Papiss Cisse.

Cisse has been given a seven-match ban after he responded to the apparent spit in his direction from Evans with a similarly vile response, which he later apologised for.

Despite compelling video evidence, Evans insisted his actions were accidental and appealed to the FA in a bid to escape punishment, but that effort was rejected.

"Mr Evans denied the charge but it was found proven," said an FA statement.

Evans' statement on Thursday said: "I would like to make it clear that I did not spit at Papiss Cisse," before he submitted a plea to the FA at the hearing on Friday.

Meanwhile, Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal said: "I don't think Jonny Evans is a spitter. He was not aware he was spitting. He has said that also. I believe him. For me, the matter is done."

After accepting the charge for his role in the altercation, Senegalese forward Cisse issued an apology, adding: "I reacted to something I found very unpleasant."

The lengthy suspensions are a blow to both Manchester United and Newcastle, with the FA falling in line with FIFA regulations over the length of time handed out for spitting offences. Cisse gets an extra-match ban as he was sent off earlier this season. 

That explains why Chelsea captain John Terry was given a four-game ban for racially abusing Anton Ferdinand back in 2011 and Evans and Cisse have been given longer suspensions now.