Chelsea striker Diego Costa has been suspended for three games after losing his appeal against his violent conduct charge for stamping on Liverpool’s Emre Can.
Costa will miss the Premier League games against Manchester City, Aston Villa and Everton after he was found guilty of deliberately stepping on Can during Chelsea’s Capital One Cup semifinal second-leg victory over Liverpool on Tuesday.
A statement on the official FA website read:
“Diego Costa will serve a three-match suspension with immediate effect after a charge of violent conduct against him was found proven by an Independent Regulatory Commission on Friday 30 January 2015.
“The Chelsea forward had denied the charge in relation to an on-field incident involving Liverpool’s Emre Can which occurred in the 12th minute of the League Cup semi-final second leg at Stamford Bridge on Tuesday 27 January 2015.
“The incident was not seen by the match officials but caught on video.”
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho, who had insisted that the stamp was “absolutely accidental” after the match, was recently fined 25,000 pounds by the FA for claiming there was a ”clear campaign” against his side. This decision will not help ease tensions between the FA the Premier League leaders.
In response Chelsea cancelled their Friday’s news conference, which under Premier League rules they are obliged to hold.
More worrying to Mourinho is that he has to play Chelsea without his top striker and best playmaker as Cesc fabregas is expected to miss the game with a hamstring injury.
Chelsea have a chance to extend their lead over City to 8 points on Saturday with a win. Missing Costa and Fabregas, will Mourinho focus on keeping the five point gap and play for the draw instead of going for the win?