Falkirk: Kevin O'Hara handed eight-game ban for abusing Dean Shiels about having one eye

Northern Ireland international Shiels had his right eye removed in 2006 which was damaged in a childhood accident

Dean Shiels
Dean Shiels Reuters

Falkirk forward Kevin O'Hara has been given an eight-game ban for taunting Dunfermline midfielder Dean Shiels about him only having one eye.

O'Hara, 19, was charged with "excessive misconduct" by a Scottish FA tribunal after the incident in a Challenge Cup match on 7 October.

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In 2006, Northern Irishman Shiels had surgery to remove his right eye, which was damaged in a childhood accident.

O'Hara's team-mate Joe McKee, 25, has been charged with the same offence.

However, according to the BBC, he intends to protest his innocence before a separate three-man tribunal on 16 November.

Under the Scottish FA rules, there are three potential sanctions for "excessive misconduct" - bans of four, eight or 12 matches.

Shiels was sent off in Falkirk's 2-0 win over Dunfermline last month for a frustrated tackle late in the game, after receiving verbal abuse throughout the afternoon. McKee played under Shiels' father Kenny at Morton in 2014. Referee Steven McLean mentioned the incident in his match report after being informed of it post-match by Dunfermline players and staff.

O'Hara, who is an academy product and has made 15 first-team appearances for Falkirk, requested that his case was brought forward.

It means he O'Hara will not play again this year - with his return set to be against Shiels in an away clash with the Pars on January 2.

Ex-Rangers and Northern Ireland star Shiels, 32, lost sight in his right eye in a domestic accident when he was eight. Shiels, who played in Arsenal's academy, bravely resumed playing after an op to have the eye removed in 2006. He was suffering pain from a build-up of burst blood vessels and now has a false eye following the surgery.

Today, a Falkirk statement read: "The club take note of the decision made by the Scottish FA Judicial Panel and are in the process of requesting the written reasons."

According to the Sun, McKee and O'Hara have been aware of the investigation for almost a month.

Shiels landed a red card from ref McLean in the October 7 cup tie for a wild challenge on McKee.

Dunfermline boss Allan Johnston said after the match: "I think there were maybe some poor remarks made towards Dean."