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22 July 2024

Liverpool will not appeal Suarez ban

By Reuters

Liverpool will not appeal against striker Luis Suarez’s eight-match ban for racially abusing Manchester United’s Patrice Evra, the English FA said on Tuesday.  

“Liverpool FC have this afternoon informed the FA that they will not be appealing the decision of an Independent Regulatory Commission in relation to the recently proven misconduct charge against Luis Suarez,” the governing body said in a statement on their website (www.thefa.com).  

“Suarez will be suspended with immediate effect for a period of eight matches, starting with this evening’s fixture against Manchester City.” 

The Uruguay international, who was also fined 40,000 pounds ($62,200), was accused of racially abusing the French fullback in Liverpool’s Premier League draw against Manchester United on Oct. 15.  

According to an FA report, Suarez, who has consistently denied the accusations, used the Spanish word “negro”, which means “black”, or its plural “negros” seven times during a confrontation between the pair.  

Liverpool released a statement in which they were highly critical of the FA’s disciplinary procedure but said it was time to put an end to the matter.  

“Continuing a fight for justice in this particular case beyond today would only obscure the fact that the club wholeheartedly supports the efforts of the Football Association, the Football League and the Premier League to put an end to any form of racism in English football,” the Premier League club said on their website (www.liverpoolfc.tv). 

“It is time to put the Luis Suarez matter to rest and for all of us, going forward, to work together to stamp out racism in every form both inside and outside the sport. 

“It is for this reason that we will not appeal the eight-game suspension of Luis Suarez.” 

The independent panel, who sat in judgment on the case, took advice from linguistic experts in Latin American Spanish after Suarez said he used the term “negro in an affectionate and friendly way which was common in Uruguay”.  

The Liverpool player, whose evidence was described as unreliable in the FA’s disciplinary report, issued a statement reiterating his denial that he had used racist language.  

“I’m very upset at feeling so powerless whilst being accused of something which I did not, nor would not, ever do,” he said on the club website. 

“In my country, ‘negro’ is a word we use commonly, a word which doesn’t show any lack of respect and is even less so a form of racist abuse. Based on this, everything which has been said so far is totally false. 

“I will carry out the suspension with the resignation of someone who hasn’t done anything wrong and who feels extremely upset by the events. I do feel sorry for the fans and for my team mates whom I will not be able to help during the next month. It will be a very difficult time for me.”