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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Portuguese Punished

ROTTERDAM, Netherlands -- Three Portuguese players - Abel Xavier, Nuno Gomes and Paulo Bento - were handed long suspensions by UEFA on Sunday for their excessive protests in the Euro 2000 semifinal, won by France with a disputed penalty.

Defender Abel Xavier was suspended from all matches in UEFA competitions for nine months, striker Nuno Gomes, who was sent off, was suspended for eight months and midfielder Paulo Bento for six months.

All three will miss the start of Portugal's World Cup qualifying campaign and matches against Estonia on Sept. 3, Ireland on Oct. 7 and the Netherlands on Oct. 11.

Portugal was also fined 175,000 Swiss francs ($106,733) for the mayhem at the end of the game. It has until Wednesday to appeal the decision.