Luis Suarez: Liverpool’s Brendan Rodgers criticises FA over ban

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers believes the FA has “punished the man not the incident” by giving striker Luis Suarez a 10-match ban for biting Branislav Ivanovic.

Uruguay’s Suarez, 26, admitted a charge of violent conduct after the 2-2 draw at Anfield on Sunday.

Rodgers told LFC TV: “The punishment is against the man, rather than the incident.

“We have a punishment with no intention of helping [his] rehabilitation.”

Liverpool have until 12:00 BST on Friday to appeal, but will be without Suarez until late September if the FA upholds its verdict.

“We are shocked and bitterly disappointed,” said Rodgers. “It is the severity of the ban which has hurt most. That is something we are bitterly disappointed with.

“I can only compare [it] with similar incidents we have had. We have had two incidents of this type of scenario, both in 2006.”

Appearing to refer to the FA’s decision not to charge Tottenham’s Jermain Defoe for allegedly biting Javier Mascherano, then of West Ham, Rodgers said: “One player received no ban and continued to be chosen by the FA as part of the England squad.

“The second player received a five-game ban. As you can imagine whenever Luis Suarez receives a 10-match ban it is very very difficult for us to understand and even more so for him.

“If I had more players of a similar mentality we would be in a different position. He has not let me down one bit.

“The standard set by the club – he fell way below that at the weekend. But it does not mean he should be thrown to the garbage, which is what has happened over the last couple of days.”