Pinola banned for spitting

Javier Pinola of Nuremberg has been banned for four Bundesliga matches for spitting at Bayern Munich’s Bastian Schweinsteiger.

The Argentine defender called and apologized to Schweinsteiger a day after the incident during Nuremberg’s 3-0 loss to Bayern on Sunday. Schweinsteiger accepted the apology, but the German football federation (DFB) decided to impose the ban for "glaring unsportmanlike conduct."

The referee of the match missed the incident late in the first half but Schweinsteiger reported it in post-match interviews.

The DFB said Wednesday that Pinola "on purpose spat at his rival Bastian Schweinsteiger and hit him on the right side of the head."

After the match, Germany midfielder Schweinsteiger called for Pinola to be punished and said such behavior did not belong in the Bundesliga. "It’s not fair play, no respect."

Nuremberg already has fined Pinola an undisclosed sum and condemned the incident.

"We spoke with Pinola and we showed him the images. He himself was horrified by what he saw and called Schweinsteiger and apologized," Nuremberg’s board member Martin Bader said.