Arsenal defender Gabriel has had the red-card he received in last weekend’s game against Chelsea rescinded following a successful appeal. The Brazilian defender was sent off for violent conduct by referee Mike Dean after he had appeared to deliberately stand on Diego Costa’s foot whilst shuffling backwards.
The news will come as a relief to manager Arsene Wenger, who will now be able to make use of the Brazilian for the next three Premier League matches rather than a three-match ban. Although the suspension for violent conduct has been lifted, Gabriel still has an FA charge of improper conduct still hanging over him from where he refused to instantly leave the pitch following that sending off. He has until 6pm on Thursday to respond to the charge.
Gabriel and Diego Costa started clashing from the off at Stamford Bridge, with Costa seemingly doing his best to rough the feathers of the entire Arsenal back-line in order to seek a reaction. However, despite Costa getting away with his erratic and provoking actions during the match, the Spanish international now faces a three match ban after retrospective action has been taken by the FA for violent conduct due to an earlier incident with Laurent Koscielny.
Because the match officials didn’t see the incident they couldn’t include it in their match report, so an independent panel of former elite referees were left to decide whether they deemed the actions of Costa to be a red card, which they duly did. Costa has until 6pm on Thursday to appeal, which if unsuccessful will mean a three match ban.
For Arsene Wenger, the reversal of the ban and the retrospective action taken on Diego Costa add only a tiny bit of light following a dismal weekend where they struggled to compete in a 2-0 loss to reigning champions Chelsea at Stamford Bridge, and in a match where they also had Santi Cazorla sent off for two bookable offences. For Arsenal fans, it was further evidence of the frailties within the Arsenal squad and the seemingly lack of a world class striker, which most fans believe would propel them to challenge for honours.