Young footballer banned for nine months

A 16-year-old footballer who committed a first Anti-Doping Rule Violation (ADRV) for Possession of a banned substance, has received a nine-month ban from all sport.

The player was found in possession of a pen-type dispenser containing somatropin when he was 15 years old. Somatropin is a Growth Hormone which is banned at all times in sport under the WADA 2019 Prohibited List.

On 8 July 2020, The Football Association (The FA) charged the footballer, alleging a breach of its 2019/20 Anti-Doping Regulations.

An independent Regulatory Commission, which was convened by The FA, considered the case and on 12 January 2021, it issued the footballer with a nine-month ban from sport. Considering the time the footballer spent provisionally suspended by The FA, the independent Regulatory Commission decided that the ban started on 7 August 2020 and will end on 7 May 2021.

Speaking on the case, UKAD Director of Operations, Pat Myhill said: “Athletes, their parents and the teams they play for, all have a role to play in helping to keep sport clean. This case demonstrates that the anti-doping rules apply to all athletes, regardless of age, and serves as an important reminder of the serious consequences that can apply if those rules are broken.

“If you are responsible for a young athlete, you should take a proactive approach to ensure their participation in clean sport and help to protect them from the risks of doping.”

*Due to the age of the player in question, their name and club have been redacted from the press release and the Written Reasons document.

Technical terms

Somatropin is a Growth Hormone. Growth Hormones are banned under section S2.3 of the WADA 2019 Prohibited List. Somatropin is a non-Specified Substance and is prohibited at all times.

The footballer was charged by The FA in accordance with FA Rules F3 and E25 for a breach of Regulations 4(a) and 8(a) of its 2019/20 FA Anti-Doping Regulations.