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Banned Lehmann accepts Stuttgart fine

SoccerNews in Bundesliga 17 Dec 2009

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Stuttgart’s director of sport Horst Heldt said Thursday ex-Germany goalkeeper Jens Lehmann has accepted the fine imposed by club bosses for criticising the sacking of former coach Markus Babbel.

The 40-year-old had initially refused to pay the fine of 40,000 euros (57,441 US dollars) which he earned for criticising the club’s executive committee in the media for sacking Babbel earlier this month.

Lehmann accused Stuttgart’s bosses of bowing to pressure from fans.

But Heldt revealed both he and new Stuttgart coach Christian Gross had met with the former Arsenal goalkeeper, who retired from international football in August 2008, and the fine had been accepted.

“We had a discussion and a few things were cleared up,” Heldt said.

“He has accepted the fine and the warning (about his future conduct).”

Lehmann has attracted the headlines here recently for all the wrong reasons.

Having slammed Stuttgart bosses for sacking Babbel, Lehmann then refused to pay the fine given to him by his club only to be sent off last weekend.

He saw red in the 87th minute of the match at Mainz on Sunday for standing on the foot of the home side’s Burkina Faso striker Aristide Bance which led to his side conceeding a penalty to seal a 1-1 draw.

The red card led to him being banned for three games by the German Football Federation’s (DFB) disciplinary commission.

The Bundesliga’s winter break starts this weekend meaning Lehmann will not play until the end of January, dealing a blow to his team who are struggling in 15th position in the Bundesliga with just 13 points.

“I do not know about it 100 percent at the moment, but I think we will accept the ban,” added Heldt.

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