08/07/2013 09:36 EDT | Updated 10/07/2013 05:12 EDT

Italian footballer given 10-match ban under new rules for racially abusing opponent

ROME - An Italian football player has been banned for 10 matches after racially abusing an opponent in the first use of new anti-discrimination rules.

Gaetano Iannini, who plays for fifth-division Matera, was handed the lengthy suspension by the Italian football league on Wednesday for "directing an insult of racial discrimination at an opponent."

Iannini was sent off for the incident during Sunday's 2-0 Italian Cup loss to third-division Sudtirol.

It is the first time that new Italian anti-discriminatory rules which were introduced in June have been used.

In England, Liverpool striker Luis Suarez was handed an eight-match ban in 2011 for racially abusing Manchester United's Patrice Evra.