• World Cup

Suarez a 'serious case' for FIFA disciplinary committee

ESPN staff
June 25, 2014
Luis Suarez in new biting storm

FIFA has announced it will investigate the Luis Suarez alleged biting incident with Liverpool's Uruguayan striker likely to face a lengthy ban if found guilty.

Suarez appeared to bite Italy's Giorgio Chiellini towards the end of Uruguay's 1-0 win, leaving teeth-marks on his shoulder

A FIFA statement read: "FIFA can confirm that disciplinary proceedings have been opened against the player Luis Suarez of Uruguay.

'He's embarrassed everyone

Luis Suarez hold his teeth after biting Giorgio Chiellini © Getty Images
  • While Luis Suarez dismissed his actions as "these things happen" and Giorgio Chiellini described the striker as "a sneak", other top names in football were having their say on the biting incident.
  • Italy boss Cesare Prandelli, who went on to resign immediately after the game, confirmed he had seen the bite marks.
  • "I didn't see Suarez biting him but I saw the bite-marks on his shoulder but the referee's assistants were so busy they didn't see anything. It's a shame, it's a real shame that it turned out like this."
  • Meanwhile, in his latest Paddy Power blog, former Manchester United and England star Paul Scholes said he had "embarrassed his club, country and family".
  • He added: "He will feel terrible, and the entire incident is such a shame because he's a tremendous player.
  • "But people will remember Suarez now for his biting antics at this World Cup rather than his supreme footballing ability."

"We are awaiting the official match reports and will gather all the necessary elements in order to evaluate the matter."

FIFA asked the team to present evidence, which can include video recordings, by 9pm UK time on Wednesday. A decision must be published before Saturday, when Uruguay play Colombia in their round-of-16 match at the Maracana.

FIFA's disciplinary code sets a maximum ban of 24 matches or two years, but the longest ban in World Cup history was eight games for Italy's Mauro Tassotti for breaking Spain's Luis Enrique's nose in 1994 with an elbow.

Jim Boyce, Britain's FIFA vice-president and head of FIFA's referees committee, expressed major concerns about Suarez's actions.

"I have watched the incident several times on television," he said. "There is no doubt Luis Suarez is a fantastic footballer but, once again, his actions have left him open to severe criticism. FIFA must investigate the incident seriously and take whatever disciplinary action deemed necessary."

Michel D'Hooghe - a Belgian member of the FIFA Executive Committee - said it is "really a serious case for our disciplinary commission".

Suarez has twice been banned for biting opponents. In 2013, he was banned for 10 matches for biting Chelsea's Branislav Ivanovic and in 2010 he was given a seven-game ban while playing for Ajax for biting PSV Eindhoven's Otman Bakkal.

Following the game, Suarez defending his actions, saying: "These things happen."

FIFA's disciplinary code allows action to be taken retrospectively via video evidence even if the incident has been seen by the referee.

Article 77 of FIFA's disciplinary code states the disciplinary committee is responsible for "sanctioning serious infringements which have escaped the match officials' attention" and "rectifying obvious errors in the referee's disciplinary decisions".

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