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Judgement day for Luis Suarez 'in a flawed FA procedure'

Today the FA sits in judgement on Luis Suarez, or at least one of its appointed but independent disciplinary panels does.

It is a case that highlights, more than any other, why the FA's procedure is flawed and needs an urgent review and wholesale change.

Luis Suarez pictured after he bit Chelsea's Branislav Ivanovic Credit: Press Association

The guardians of our beautiful game take great pride in their principle of not re-refereeing games. In other words, if the man in charge sees the incident in question then his decision, correct or not, by and large stands.

However, when he doesn't see it, they allow themselves the opportunity of some retrospective justice - in other words they do re-referee the game and this is exactly what is happening in the Liverpool striker's case.

So, if the referee had spotted Suarez sink his teeth into Branislav Ivanovic's arm and given him a yellow card then that would have been that, as happened when Jermaine Defoe had a nibble at Javier Mascherano.

If the man with the whistle had brandished a red card, that too would have been the end of it. Suarez would have been banned for three games for violent conduct and we'd have all moved on.

Luis Suarez reacts after a missed chance on goal at the weekend Credit: Press Association

But no. The FA has already stated that it intends to punish him more than the usual three games because that sanction is clearly insufficient.

Well why is it? He didn't hurt anyone.

OK, biting is pretty repugnant, even an indication of a very troubled temperament but Ivanovic is not in plaster, or walking around on crutches; in fact he was having a laugh about the whole thing on the training ground yesterday.

So why then? Is it because we find biting an offending image? Perhaps it is bad for business, for the sponsors or maybe its because impressionable youngsters were watching and Suarez is setting a bad example? Well, even if all of that is true, this is not a court of morals.

And if it was, whose morals would we be bound by?

Suarez seen in Liverpool on Monday Credit: Press Association

So maybe three games is not enough because Suarez "has previous"?

Well he does have form, yes, but not for violent conduct; not in England at least. For racial abuse, yes and for diving but not for violence.

So in a court of law, sentencing would not be influenced by Suarez's past misdemeanours because none is relevant to the charge in question.

And surely an institution which upholds the principles of British fairness cannot be suggesting that Suarez has got to get more than three games because we dont like the way he behaves?

There are hard-to-warm-to personalities at every club, notably in the England squad too.

If good behaviour and likeability were prerequisites of selection, most managers would struggle to get eleven out every weekend.

And finally we come to the punishment. We know already it is going to be a minimum of four games but is likely to be nearer 10. On what basis?

John Terry got four games for racially abusing a black opponent. Are we really expected to accept that a red mist moment, offensive and unpalatable as Suarez's was, is worse than spouting racist bile?

No, I didnt think so.

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