Tottenham Women Football Club’s forward, Chioma Ubogagu, has been handed a nine-month ban following two anti-doping violations, the Football Association (FA) in England announced on Thursday in London.
The 29-year-old, who has three England caps, admitted the violations relating to the banned substance canrenone, which was detected in a urine sample last October.
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The independent regulatory commission imposing the suspension – running to October this year – accepted Ubogagu had committed the violations unintentionally.
Tottenham said the banned substance was in medication Ubogagu had been prescribed in the U.S. to treat acne and had not known it was prohibited.
A statement from the FA on Thursday said: “An independent regulatory commission has suspended Tottenham Hotspur Women’s Chioma Ubogagu for nine months following two Anti-doping Rule Violations (ADRVs).
“The forward was charged with two ADRVs under the FA’s anti-doping regulations for the presence and use of canrenone, which is a banned substance, and had been detected within a urine sample collected during a squad test on Oct. 7, 2021, by UK Anti-Doping.
“Ubogagu admitted the two ADRVs, which the commission accepted were committed unintentionally and found that (she) had established that she committed them without significant fault or negligence on her part during a subsequent hearing.
“The commission imposed a nine-month period of ineligibility.”
Tottenham, who signed the former Arsenal and Real Madrid player last summer, said in a statement on their official website: “Chioma was prescribed two forms of medication in the U.S. from a personal doctor to treat acne before signing for the club.
“Both the club and Chioma fully cooperated with the FA and UKAD during the disciplinary process and Chioma has been unavailable for selection since the provisional suspension was imposed in January.
“Chioma takes full responsibility for the charge and deeply regrets her actions admitting a lack of knowledge and awareness on her part.”
Ubogagu said: “I am so sorry to my teammates and staff that I can’t be out on the pitch. The club has been fully supportive throughout this entire process and I am so appreciative of all their help.
“My faith, family, and close friends have helped me immensely in this difficult time. I am eager to be back soon now that this has been resolved.
“I want to make clear that the medication had no performance-enhancing effects for me, but I still made the mistake of not being as diligent as possible and as a result, I am unable to play the game I love until I serve my suspension.
“While my dermatologist is aware of my profession, it is also my responsibility to know more about the medications I am prescribed.
“I plan to share my story and educate others on the severity of what can happen and I hope I can help other athletes avoid situations like mine in the future.” (dpa/NAN)