Durban - Manning Rangers midfielder Jerome McCarthy can continue his football career despite testing positive for drugs. The brother of Bafana Bafana star Benni McCarthy was fined R10 000 and ordered to do 30 hours community service as punishment.

According to Rangers chief executive Afzal Khan, the left winger pleaded guilty to the charge at a disciplinary hearing earlier this week.

The guilty plea, coupled with the fact that he had already been under suspension for a month ahead of the hearing, were strong mitigating factors for the South African Football Association (Safa) not to ban McCarthy, Khan said.

"He has lost out on match bonuses and appearance fees. We are glad to have him back and hope it's a lesson Jerome and other players will learn from," Khan said.

McCarthy faces a one-year ban if he does not pay the fine, Safa's anti-doping committee head Raymond Hack said.

McCarthy is under contract with Rangers until March when he resumes his career with American side Hampton Roads Mariners.