LONDON: The Football Association has fined Newcastle United £40,000 and north-east neighbours Sunderland £20,000 after the Premier League clubs accepted a charge of failing to control their players during a stormy derby.

Newcastle collect a heavier punishment since this was their second incident of a similar nature this season. Both clubs have also been warned as to their future conduct.

An FA statement said: “The incident, which also saw both teams being warned as to their future conduct, occurred in the 19th minute of their game on March 4, 2012 and followed a challenge by Sunderland’s James McClean on Newcastle’s Danny Simpson.”

Simpson reacted angrily to McClean’s challenge, sparking a melee in which every player apart from Black Cats keeper Simon Mignolet was involved. Most appeared to be attempting to calm the situation as referee Mike Dean attempted to restore order.

Sunderland had two men – striker Stephane Sessegnon and skipper Lee Cattermole – sent off, the latter after the final whistle had sounded as substitute Shola Ameobi snatched a point with an injury-time strike which cancelled out Nicklas Bendtner’s first-half penalty.

The two benches also clashed on several occasions with Magpies boss Alan Pardew later apologising for celebrating the award of a late penalty, which Papiss Cisse saw saved by Mignolet, in front of counterpart Martin O’Neill.

Both Newcastle and Arsenal were fined £30,000 for a similar offence in August last year after a mass confrontation when striker Gervinho hit out at Joey Barton and was dismissed during a 0-0 draw on Tyneside.

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