Ceres Negros FC will be without star striker Bienvenido Maranon when they take on Singapore’s Home United in the AFC Cup Zonal Finals.
The Philippines Football League giants’ hopes of AFC Cup glory have been hit by the news that Maranon has been suspended for two matches by the Asian Football Confederation (AFC).
AFC meted out the suspension to the Ceres forward for the use of abusive language and gestures, along with bringing the game into disrepute.
The 28-year-old will also have to pay a fine of $1,000 and the AFC informed the player that a repeat violation of these regulations will be dealt with even more severely.
Maranon committed the offences during the game against Yangon United FC at the Thuwanna Youth Training Centre Stadium.
The news will be well received by Singapore Premier League side Home United as they aim to avenge last year’s painful loss to Ceres in the Zonal Finals.
Aidil Sharin’s team are also facing an injury crisis with veteran full-back Juma’at Jantan and French wing-back Sirina Camara ruled out for the rest of the season.
Home are looking at possibilities of adding new players to their roster with former strikers Stipe Plazibat and Ken Ilso named as potential recruits. Another potential signing is A-League winger Isaka Cernak.
The Protectors will travel to Bacolod to play the first leg on Aug 1 before the return leg takes place at Jalan Besar Stadium in Singapore on Aug 8.