Prince Mohammed Bin Fahd Stadium in Dammam: Nassr's Portuguese forward and team captain Cristiano Ronaldo (2nd R) and Ettifaq's Saudi midfielder and team captain Ali Hazazi (2nd L) pose for a picture with the referee team ahead of the Saudi Pro League football match between Al Nassr and Al Ettifaq at the Prince Mohammed Bin Fahd Stadium in Dammam on May 27, 2023. Image Credit: AFP

Dubai: Individuals caught smoking inside sports stadiums in Saudi Arabia will be fined SR 20,000, while acts of spitting by players on any officials during any match will result in a significant 6-month suspension and a fine of SR 100,000.

These stringent measures are approved as part of the latest amendments to the discipline and ethics regulations ratified by the Board of Directors of the Saudi Football Federation, effective from Friday, August 11, 2023.

The board has made these changes in alignment with Article (35) paragraph (11) of the Saudi Football Association's statute, granting them the authority to introduce and amend the federation's regulations.

Alongside these individual infractions, clubs have been presented with a clear framework of repercussions for non-compliance. Clubs risk demotion to the lowest league tier for failing to adhere to specific federation mandates.

Furthermore, clubs will bear financial liability for any misconduct exhibited by their fans. Fines for such behavior span from SR10,000 to SR100,000, regardless of whether the club took preventative measures or not.

A slew of other offenses has also been clearly delineated. Engaging in violent behaviors, vandalizing stadium property, or endangering spectators by hurling dangerous objects, including fireworks, can lead to fines between SR10,000 and SR100,000. The federation has zero tolerance for acts of racism within the stadium premises, penalizing offenders with a substantial SR 200,000 fine. Disparaging the Saudi Federation in any manner will also attract a fine of SR80,000.

Media interactions are another focal point of the revised regulations. Inappropriate or misleading interactions with the press, particularly those stirring public opinion, will face penalties up to SR100,000. The falsification of sports-related documents comes with its own hefty price tag, a fine of SR200,000. If a player is found guilty of such deceit, they will be suspended for a minimum of 6 months.

The regulations further stipulate the importance of post-match responsibilities. Coaches or players who shirk their duty to attend post-match press conferences or meetings will first be issued a warning. Persistent negligence will result in financial penalties: SR20,000 for players and SR30,000 for coaches.