Antonio Nocerino has been suspended and fined by the MLS disciplinary committee due to the Italian entering the field of play in injury time versus New England. The amount of the fine was not disclosed. Nocerino will miss the away fixture at New York Red Bulls on Sunday.
The sanctions were handed down for violating the league's "entering the field of play policy," according to a statement released by the league Thursday.
In Sunday's 2-2 draw against New England, Nocerino had been subbed off at the 90-minute mark for Servando Carrasco and ran a few yards onto the pitch to hug Kevin Molino after his 92nd-minute go-ahead goal. That's it. That's the extent of his wrongdoing.
Basically, you're not allowed to have fun and be extremely happy, says DisCo. Keep in mind, this is the same organization that just suspended D.C. United Head Coach Ben Olsen for retrieving a stray ball.
In punishing both Nocerino and Olsen, the league is saying that there is a zero-policy stance on this rule, and is sticking to the letter of the law, rather than the spirit for which the rule is intended.
The embattled midfielder will miss the match at New York, with Orlando City still potentially without Cristian Higuita (groin). Backup Pedro Ribeiro (back) has also been nursing a knock. If Higuita can't go, Adrian Heath may be forced to start a two-man central midfield of Carrasco and Darwin Ceren, with Homegrown Player Harrison Heath potentially adding bench depth.
We leave you with video evidence of Nocerino's dastardly crime: