Suarez accepts bite charge but queries longer ban
Updated: 2013-04-25 05:43
By Agence France-Presse in London (China Daily)
Liverpool forward Luis Suarez disputed the English FA's view that his punishment for biting Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic over the weekend merits a longer punishment than the usual three-game ban.
The FA said in a statement on Tuesday the Uruguayan international had accepted a charge of violent conduct but "has denied the FA's claim the standard punishment of three matches is clearly insufficient for this offense".
The incident in Sunday's 2-2 Premier League draw at Anfield was not seen by match officials and is being retrospectively reviewed.
An independent regulatory commission will hear the case on Wednesday. Suarez has already apologized to Serbia centerhalf Ivanovic and been fined by his club.
Suarez, who scored an injury-time equalizer following the bite midway through the second half, received a seven-game ban from the Dutch FA for biting an opponent while playing for Ajax Amsterdam in 2010, shortly before he joined Liverpool.
The 26-year-old, top scorer in the Premier League this term with 23 goals, also served an eight-match ban for racially abusing Manchester United defender Patrice Evra last season.
Uruguay captain Diego Lugano issued a statement supporting Suarez, a key member of the team fighting for a berth at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
"All of us who compete at a thousand revs and maximum adrenalin are prone to some mistakes," Lugano wrote on his website.
"Luis is the most competitive of all. He made a mistake and said sorry.
"In the same way that a defender makes a mistake going for the attacker's leg instead of the ball or when coaches, referees, journalists or even directors make mistakes without the adrenalin of competition.
"The (Uruguay) squad support him because you see people's quality in everyday things. The people who work with him like, respect and protect him, as much in Uruguay as Holland or England. That's the most important thing in life."
The Uruguayan Football Association is also defending Suarez from punishment by world soccer's ruling body, FIFA, for punching Chile defender Gonzalo Jara in a South American World Cup qualifier in Santiago last month.
(China Daily 04/25/2013 page22)