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Bellamy escapes FA ban

Craig Bellamy has escaped an FA ban following an altercation with a Manchester United fan near the end of Manchester City's 4-3 defeat at Old Trafford on Sunday.

The Welsh striker appeared to shove a pitch invader in the wake of City's third goal in the pulsating Manchester derby. However, match referee Martin Atkinson confirmed that he would not have sent Bellamy off if he had witnessed the altercation.

"In relation to Craig Bellamy the match referee has confirmed that he would not have sent the player off had he seen the incident with the fan at the time. Craig Bellamy will be contacted by the FA and warned as to his future conduct."

"The FA would repeat its previous advice that players should not become involved with or approach fans in such circumstances. The FA would also take this opportunity to remind fans, managers and players of their joint responsibility towards the game and strongly condemns any pitch invasions by fans."

United substitute Gary Neville also received nothing but a warning following allegations that he ran to celebrate underneath the away fans in the wake of Michael Owen's late winner: "Gary Neville has been reminded of his responsibilities following his actions after Manchester United's final goal deep into injury time."

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