ROME: The risks players run in stadia without fans but still with pitchside microphones has been underlined with veteran Italy goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon being fined for blasphemy.

The Juventus star was fined €5,000 by the disciplinary committee of the Italian federation for using “a blasphemous expression” during a Serie A match against Parma on December 19.

Buffon, 43, who holds record for 653 games played in Serie A, was overheard harangued his young teammate Manolo Portanova during Juve’s 4-0 win.

The incident, which was not captured by television cameras, was recorded on an audio recording.

Blasphemy appears in the disciplinary code of Italian sports justice. Since 2010, various sanctions have been adopted against players or coaches who have made comments deemed as disrespectful to God or the sacred.

But penalties have increased this season, as the absence of a crowd in stadiums allows microphones and cameras to capture the comments exchanged by players.

In December Bryan Cristante of Roma and, on Tuesday, Manuel Lazzari of Lazio were each suspended for one match for “blasphemous comments”.