No matter what happens over the weekend, one of the lasting aspects of this year’s World Cup will be the Luis Suarez controversy.
This week, football’s global governing body FIFA rejected Uruguay striker Luis Suarez’s appeal against a four-month ban from all football-related activities for biting Italy’s Giorgio Chiellini. Suarez was also banned for nine international matches after the incident at the World Cup in Brazil and fined him 100,000 Swiss Francs (£65,000).
For FIFA Vice President Jeffrey Webb, Suarez is a player who should consider himself lucky with the extent of the ban.
“It’s the third time it has happened and obviously I think the Disciplinary Committee acted swiftly and decisively and I believe the punishment, I think, actually for Luis Suarez may be a bit lucky to be honest with you,” Webb said. “The game has no place for that. We have no place for that. And whatever issues or whatever underlying that triggers that or causes that, obviously that’s something he needs to work on.
“For being his third time and for being suspended for four months, I think he’s very lucky to be honest with you.”
The Uruguayan Football Association had described Fifa’s ruling as an “excessive decision” for which “there was not enough evidence”. Under the terms of the suspension, Suarez – who has apologized for his behavior – cannot train with his club and is prohibited from entering the confines of any stadium, although players’ union Fifpro argue the details “lack clarity.”
Brazil stages its final matches this weekend, with the host nation facing the Netherlands in the third place match on July 12 in Brasilia at 3 p.m. Germany and Argentina battle for the World Cup trophy on July 13 in Rio De Janeiro from 2 p.m.