Premier League

FA explains length of Suarez ban

NO EXCUSE
Luis Suarez (L) has been banned for 10 matches for biting Branislav Ivanovic (R).
Share This Story

   
 

Liverpool striker Luis Suarez was banned for 10 matches for biting Chelsea's Branislav to act as a deterrent to further such "deplorable behavior", an Football Association Regulatory Commission ruled.

The Uruguay international was handed a lengthy suspension for the incident, missed by referee Kevin Friend but subsequently reviewed using television evidence, in last weekend's 2-2 draw at Anfield.

Suarez decided not to appeal against the sanction, seven matches more than the statutory ban for violent conduct, having read the reasons of the panel which have now been made public.

"We believe it is our duty to discourage any players at any level from acting in such a deplorable manner or attempting to copy what they had seen on the television," said the report.

"The incident of biting an opponent is alien to football and must remain so."

The panel also stated that Suarez had failed to "fully appreciate the gravity and seriousness of this truly exceptional incident.

"It is completely unacceptable and such truly disgraceful behavior could also lead to possible health issues.

"This truly shocking incident had been seen by millions of viewers both domestic and overseas, as well as generating a great deal of interest and debate amongst countless numbers of people.

"Whilst we accepted that Mr Suarez's reputation had been impacted, these unsavory pictures would have given a bad image of English football domestically and across the world alike.

"All players in the higher level of the game are seen as role models, have the duty to act professionally and responsibly, and set the highest example of good conduct to the rest of the game - especially to young players.

"In this regard and on this occasion, Mr Suarez's conduct had fallen far below the standards expected of him.

"We took into consideration Mr Suarez's apology, his personal statement, supporting letter from Mr Brendan Rodgers and the letter from Ms Zoe Ward (Liverpool's secretary).

"But when these were read in conjunction with Mr Suarez's denial of the standard punishment that would otherwise apply for violent conduct is clearly insufficient, it seemed to us that Mr Suarez has not fully appreciated the gravity and seriousness of this truly exceptional incident."

Suarez had previous history of biting an opponent, PSV midfielder Otman Bakkal, for which he served a seven-match ban immediately before he left Ajax to join Liverpool in January 2011.

In a separate matter, he was also banned for eight matches last season after being found guilty of racially abusing Manchester United's Patrice Evra.

However, the commission paid no heed to either of those in deliberating his case.

"We did not take into consideration any previous disciplinary records of Mr Suarez and considered the offence in isolation," said the report.

The panel, comprised of chairman Thura KT Win, JP, Roger Pawley and Brian Talbot, said of Suarez's bite "it would be preposterous to conclude that it  was not an intentional act''.

But they disagreed with the Football Association's suggestion the striker had done so to provoke a reaction from Ivanovic in an attempt to get the defender sent off.

"We found that biting an opponent in itself was extremely shocking, unexpected and truly exceptional," said the report.

"The participants in a game of football do not expect to be bitten by another participant when they come to play football.

"In this incident, Mr Ivanovic would not, and should not, have been expected to be subject to such a shocking and reprehensible action.

"The incidents of biting an opponent in football are very rare at the moment and we need to ensure that it will remain so."

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by