Red card stands for Anfield defender

Martin Skrtel
Martin Skrtel
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LIVERPOOL’S Martin Skrtel has failed in his bid to overturn a three-match ban for standing on Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea.

The Slovakia international appealed to an independent panel sitting in judgement on the matter on the basis his action was accidental and not intentional.

However, it is understood that the panel rejected the 30-year-old centre-back’s submission and ruled the charge of violent conduct proven.

Skrtel will serve an immediate suspension, meaning he misses league games at Arsenal and home to Newcastle either side of the FA Cup quarter-final replay at Championship side Blackburn.

The defender was charged on the basis of video evidence after referee Martin Atkinson missed the incident in the last seconds of Sunday’s 2-1 defeat at Anfield.

Skrtel chased a through-ball as 10-man Liverpool searched for a late equaliser, but De Gea slid in to get there first and the defender continued his run and stood on the goalkeeper’s right shin.

A three-man panel of former elite officials reviewed the footage independently of each other and unanimously agreed the offence warranted a red card and, despite Skrtel’s protestations, a subsequent ban will now be imposed.