Melbourne Victory defender Adama Traore is facing the prospect of a lengthy A-League ban when he fronts an independent disciplinary hearing on Thursday.
The Ivorian, a winner of the 2013-14 Victory medal, was sent off in the first half of their humiliating 7-0 derby loss to cross-town rivals Melbourne City at AAMI Park on April 17.
After a rash challenge on City winger Andrew Nabbout, the stand-in Victory captain made contact with referee Chris Beath's arm as he argued the decision that resulted in his sending off.
Traore's actions sparked a brief melee before the 31-year-old threw down his captain's armband and stormed off the field.
An independent match review panel referred the matter for a disciplinary hearing after determining Traore had committed the offence of "unsporting conduct toward a match official".
History would suggest the off-contract Traore's season may be over if he is found guilty of the offence.
Danny Vukovic missed the 2008 Beijing Olympics after he was given a nine-month ban, with three suspended, for swatting the referee's arm while playing for the Central Coast Mariners in the dying minutes of the 2007-08 grand final.
Brazilian defender Tiago Calvano was given an eight-week ban in 2013 when he shoved the referee in protest at Sydney FC teammate Marc Warren receiving a red card.
After Tuesday's 1-0 loss to Sydney FC, Victory sit second bottom and have just eight matches left in their season.
The hearing will be held at Football Australia's Sydney headquarters on Thursday evening with Traore to attend in person.