Banned ... Toulon president Mourad Boudjellal.

Banned ... Toulon president Mourad Boudjellal. Photo: AFP

PARIS: Outspoken Toulon owner and club president Mourad Boudjellal was handed a 130-day ban on Thursday after using lurid language to describe the level of refereeing in a recent Top 14 game.

Boudjellal made the remarks on January 8 following Toulon's defeat at Clermont, claiming his side had been "sodomised by the referees".

France's National Rugby League (LNR) took exception to his remarks and on Thursday announced it had handed Boudjellal a ban that will see him unable to work as the club's president until June 3.

Boudjellal, who made his fortune in comic books, has the right to appeal the LNR decision.

The decision means Boudjellal will be "forbidden entry to official match (including before and after the matches) venues, to the changing rooms (teams and referees) as well as the corridors leading to these zones", according to an LNR statement.

Last week the French Rugby Referees Union (UNAR) threatened to sue Boudjellal for defamation after the remarks.

Boudjellal replied to the threat, saying: "I am not surprised that they are attacking me. With what they are paid, they need the money."

AFP