Suspended sentences may be introduced in the Bundesliga this season as part of proposals put forward by the chairman of the German Football Association's (DFB) disciplinary committee.
Hans E. Lorenz suggested in the Welt am Sonntag newspaper that players who receive red cards may not necessarily have to serve a full suspension.
Instead, they could be given shorter bans for good conduct.
"It would not come into effect with short suspensions, but possibly in cases such as Paolo Guerrero, who was once given a seven-game ban for a foul, he could then have a three-game suspended sentence," Lorenz said.
The same theory could be applied to clubs whose fans break the rules, resulting in stadium closures.
"If we close a stadium, then maybe we could first give them a suspended sentence," said Lorenz.
"An educational approach, even towards the fans, is much greater doing it this way rather than giving an immediate ban."
Lorenz's proposals will be discussed at the DFB's next meeting in Nuremberg in October.