Soccer-DFB bans German coach over fake COVID-19 vaccine certificate

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Werder Bremen present new coach Markus Anfang - Weser-Stadion, Bremen, Germany - June 6, 2021 Werder Bremen's new coach Markus Anfang poses during his presentation Pool via REUTERS/Carmen Jaspersen

(Reuters) - Coach Markus Anfang has been banned from soccer for one year and fined 20,000 euros ($22,564) after admitting to using a fake COVID-19 vaccination certificate, the German Football Association (DFB) said on Wednesday.

Anfang initially denied the charges and quit his job at second-tier club Werder Bremen in November after an investigation was launched by German authorities into his use of a fake certificate.

Anfang's former assistant Florian Junge, who worked with him at Werder, was banned for 10 months and fined 3,000 euros.

A DFB statement said that the pair, who have since confessed, had obtained fake vaccination cards in the summer of 2021 which allowed them to circumvent regular testing.

"Through their actions, Markus Anfang and Florian Junge have violated their role model positions as coaches to a considerable extent," DFB sports court chairman Hans E. Lorenz said.

The DFB added that the pair's confessions have resulted in their bans being partly on probation, allowing them to resume coaching in the 2022-23 season.

($1 = 0.8864 euros)

(Reporting by Aadi Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Toby Davis)

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