Uruguay striker Luis Suarez has been suspended for four months and nine international matches after biting Italian footballer Giorgio Chiellini during their Group D World Cup match earlier this week.
Suarez, 27, will miss the remainder of the World Cup in Brazil as well as a number subsequent qualifying matches for the 2022 tournament. He will also miss the start of the next Premiership season and three Champions League group games if he remains with Liverpool.
The football star has said that he will appeal the 100,000 Swiss Francs (£66,000) fine that accompanied the ruling, but not the suspension.
In a statement FIFA said:
“The FIFA Disciplinary Committee has reached a decision in the case related to Luis Suárez of Uruguay following an incident that occurred during the World Cup match between Italy and Uruguay played on 24 June 2014.
“The FIFA Disciplinary Committee has decided that: The player Luis Suárez is regarded as having breached art. 48 par. 1 lit. d of the FIFA Disciplinary Code (FDC) (assault), and art. 57 of the FDC (an act of unsporting behaviour towards another player).
“The player Luis Suárez is to be suspended for nine (9) official matches. The first match of this suspension is to be served in the upcoming FIFA World Cup fixture between Colombia and Uruguay on 28 June 2014. The remaining match suspensions shall be served in Uruguay’s next FIFA World Cup match(es), as long as the team qualifies, and/or in the representative team’s subsequent official matches in accordance with art. 38 par. 2a) of the FDC.
“The player Luis Suárez is banned from taking part in any kind of football-related activity (administrative, sports or any other) for a period of four (4) months in accordance with art. 22 of the FDC.
“A stadium ban is pronounced against the player Luis Suárez in accordance with art. 21 of the FDC as follows: the player Luis Suárez is prohibited from entering the confines of any stadium during the period of the ban (point 3). The player Luis Suárez is prohibited from entering the confines of any stadium in which the representative team of Uruguay is playing while he has to serve the nine-match suspension (point 2).
“The player Luis Suárez is ordered to pay a fine in the amount of CHF 100,000.
“The decision was notified to the player and the Uruguayan FA today.
“Such behaviour cannot be tolerated on any football pitch, and in particular not at a FIFA World Cup when the eyes of millions of people are on the stars on the field. The Disciplinary Committee took into account all the factors of the case and the degree of Mr Suárez’s guilt in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Code. The decision comes into force as soon it is communicated,” said Claudio Sulser, chairman of the FIFA Disciplinary Committee.”
The bite on Chiellini was the third time that Suarez has been caught biting another player during a match. He has previously bitten Otman Bakkal of PSV Eindhoven while playing for Ajax in 2010 and repeated the offence on Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic in a match at Anfield in 2013.