The English Football Association has put the final nail in the coffin for Mousa Dembele by confirming that the Tottenham Hotspurs midfielder would be facing a heavy ban, for attempting to gouge the the eye of Chelsea striker Diego Costa in the match between the two London rivals on Monday.
The fixture, which saw Spurs squander their hopes of staying in the race for the league title, had numerous instances of heated clashes between players from both sides. The FA has charged both Chelsea and Tottenham for failing to control their players in a match that saw a total of 12 yellow cards shown to the players, the most in the Premier League era.
Dembele has been charged with violent conduct after he was caught on camera trying put his fingers in to the eyes of Costa during the mayhem that erupted in the aftermath of Willian and Danny Rose clashing near the end of the first half.
According to a report by The Sun, the Football Association view the incident with the same severity as then-Liverpool striker Luis Suarez’s bite on Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic in 2013 – an incident that ended in the Uruguayan being banned for 10 games.
An FA statement explained: “It is alleged the player’s behaviour constituted violent conduct in circumstances where the standard punishment of three matches that would otherwise apply is clearly insufficient.”
The Belgium midfielder’s ban would be a major blow for Mauricio Pochettino’s side, as they would now be without two of their combative midfielders, following Dele Alli’s ban for the remainder of the league matches.