Tuesday 20 August 2019

Everton striker has ban upheld to become first Premier League player hit with retrospective diving suspension

Oumar Niasse (left) is the first Premier League player to be hit with a retrospective suspension for simulation
Oumar Niasse (left) is the first Premier League player to be hit with a retrospective suspension for simulation

Press Association

Everton striker Oumar Niasse will serve a two-match ban after his appeal against a diving charge was rejected by the Football Association.

The Senegalese becomes the first Premier League player to be hit with a retrospective suspension for simulation under the new law that kicked in at the start of this season.

Niasse was charged on Tuesday by the FA after he won a controversial penalty in Saturday's 2-2 draw at Crystal Palace.

A statement from the FA on Wednesday said: "Everton's Oumar Niasse will serve a two-match suspension with immediate effect after his denial of an FA charge of 'Successful Deception of a Match Official' was rejected.

"It was alleged he committed an act of simulation which led to a penalty being awarded in the fifth minute of the game against Crystal Palace on 18 November 2017.

"He denied the charge, however, it was found proven following an Independent Regulatory Commission hearing today (Wednesday 22 November 2017)."

The ban means Niasse, Everton's top-scorer, will miss the league games at Southampton on Sunday and at home against West Ham three days later.

The penalty in Saturday's top-flight contest at Selhurst Park was awarded by referee Anthony Taylor when Niasse went down in the Palace box and it was deemed that he had been fouled by Eagles defender Scott Dann, who reacted angrily to the decision.

Leighton Baines converted the spot-kick to cancel out James McArthur's opener for the hosts, and Niasse later netted a second equaliser.

Dann said after the game that Niasse had "conned the referee".

The FA statement on Wednesday added: "Incidents which suggest a match official has been deceived by an act of simulation are referred to a panel consisting of one ex-match official, one ex-manager and one ex-player.

"Each panel member will be asked to review all available video footage independently of one another to determine whether they consider it was an offence of 'Successful Deception of a Match Official'.

"Only in circumstances where the panel are unanimous would the FA issue a charge."

Niasse defended himself following the incident on Saturday and said he would be "shocked" to be charged.

Speaking on Wednesday before it was announced the 27-year-old's appeal had been rejected, Everton caretaker boss David Unsworth expressed his disappointment at the charge and spoke of the possibility of a "dangerous precedent" being set.

"I think anywhere on the field it's a foul. He (Niasse) was shocked and I was shocked (by the charge)," Unsworth said.

"We're all bitterly disappointed.

"I think it's a great rule but it doesn't change my stance on if there's contact anywhere on the pitch - slight or not, contact is contact.

"I think these people will be very busy (if Niasse is banned).

"We don't want contact taken out the game. Slowly but surely it has started.

"I am all for protecting players and nobody wants to see bad tackles, but we do have to have experts who know what a foul is, and those who don't know the game... It's a dangerous precedent that could be set if decisions are given against you which are debatable."

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