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No agreement yet over racism bans

The FA and the PFA are yet to reach an agreement over a solution on how severely to reprimand players for instances of racial abuse, ESPN has been told.

Despite speculation on Wednesday that a five-game ban has been agreed between the FA and the PFA, the length of any proposed standard ban is still the sticking point in negotiations.

There had been suggestions that the FA would want a mandatory eight-match ban but that the players union, the PFA, want to consider and discuss it further and would accept a suspension of five matches as a matter of course.

An FA insider told ESPN: "As yet, there is no agreement in place. We continue to work and consult with our key stakeholders on this matter."

PFA chief executive Gordon Taylor told ESPN on Tuesday that his union are ready to raise the stakes to a longer set ban for any players found guilty of racial abuse, and that there should be flexibility for that punishment to be raised for subsequent offences.

Chelsea captain John Terry's four-match suspension after the FA found him guilty of racial abuse against QPR's Anton Ferdinand was widely condemned as far too lenient.

When Liverpool's Luis Suarez received an eight-game ban for repeatedly abusing Manchester United's full-back Patrick Evra, again some anti-racism campaigners felt that did not go far enough.

The FA source made it clear to ESPN that they are consulting with all stakeholders in the game besides the players' union, and any course of action would need to be ratified by the Premier League and the Football League.

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