Soccer-Dortmund's Bellingham fined 40,000 euros for referee comments

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Bundesliga - Borussia Dortmund v VfB Stuttgart - Signal Iduna Park, Dortmund, Germany - November 20, 2021 Borussia Dortmund's Jude Bellingham celebrates after the match REUTERS/Thilo Schmuelgen

(Reuters) - The German Football Association (DFB) has fined Borussia Dortmund midfielder Jude Bellingham 40,000 euros ($45,008) for unsportsmanlike conduct after he criticised referee Felix Zwayer following Saturday's Bundesliga defeat by Bayern Munich.

Zwayer had turned down Dortmund's appeals for a penalty before awarding one to Bayern for a handball from Mats Hummels. Robert Lewandowski scored from the spot to give Bayern a 3-2 win and a four-point lead in the standings.

After the game, England international Bellingham said: "You can look at a lot of the decisions in the game. You give a referee, that has match-fixed before, the biggest game in Germany. What do you expect?"

The DFB said in a statement on Tuesday that Bellingham "doubted and ultimately denied the referee's impartiality" with his comments. Both Dortmund and Bellingham have accepted the DFB's verdict.

Zwayer was named in a 2005 scandal involving referee Robert Hoyzer, who was jailed for fixing matches in a two million euro betting fraud.

The DFB had banned Zwayer for six months for accepting 300 euros from Hoyzer and agreeing to make incorrect decisions in a match when he was an assistant referee.

($1 = 0.8887 euros)

(Reporting by Manasi Pathak in Bengaluru; Editing by Rohith Nair)

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