Suarez accepts ban as Cameron calls for action

Story highlights

  • Liverpool's Luis Suarez will not appeal 10-match ban for biting Branislav Ivanovic
  • The incident occurred during last Sunday's 2-2 drew between the two teams at Anfield
  • Suarez was given a seven-match ban for biting while playing for Ajax in 2010
  • British Prime Minister David Cameron had called for tough action

As British Prime Minister David Cameron called on footballers to act as role models, Liverpool's Luis Suarez chose not to appeal his 10-match "biting" ban handed to him by the English Football Association for biting Chelsea's Branislav Ivanovic.

Earlier this week the Uruguayan striker was hit with the sanction by the English Football Association for biting Chelsea's Branislav Ivanovic following the ruling of an Independent Regulatory Commission.

The ban's severity sparked fierce criticism from the Liverpool hierarchy.

The ban will start with immediate effect, meaning Suarez will play no part in Liverpool's four remaining Premier League matches with the Uruguayan also ruled out for the start of next season.

"Liverpool forward Luis Suarez has not appealed the suspension issued to him by an Independent Regulatory Commission this week," read an FA statement released on Friday.

Read: Suarez bites opponent

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"The FA intends to publicize the Independent Regulatory Commission's written reasons in due course."

Suarez issued a statement of contrition via his personal website where he once again apologized for his actions.

"I know that all the things that are happening to me in England will help me to improve my conduct on the field," said the 26-year-old, who could still yet win the Professional Footballers' Association Player of the Year award, after an outstanding season for Liverpool.

"Whilst 10 games is clearly greater than those bans given in past cases where player have actually been seriously injured, I acknowledge that my actions were not acceptable on the football pitch so I do not want to give the wrong impression to people by making an appeal.

"I really want to learn from what has happened in the last two-and-a-half years, many things have been said and written about me, I just tried to do my best on the field."

Read: Luis Suarez -- public enemy No.1?

In the aftermath of Sunday's game Liverpool condemned Suarez's actions and fined the player, but the club expressed "shock and disappointment" at the punishment meted out to their 23-goal top scorer.

"The charges against Luis were his to consider and we have to respect his decision to not appeal the 10-game ban," Liverpool managing director Ian Ayre said in a statement released by the club.

"Luis is an important member of our team and nothing has changed in that regard.

"We are committed to helping him improve his conduct and he will be given our full support. We look forward to him returning to the team next season when he is available for selection."

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers echoed Ayre's sentiments and praised the form Suarez has shown this season.

"Luis has made a huge contribution to the squad this season and we respect his decision to accept the ban," said the Northern Irish coach.

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"He will be missed for the remainder of this season and the early part of next, but we will have the opportunity to welcome a better person and player when he returns."

Rodgers had earlier sprang to Suarez's defense, suggesting the player had been unfairly targeted and that he would understand if he felt he needed to leave English football.

"This is a guy who I see on a daily basis trying very hard. His two passions in life are his family and Liverpool Football Club," the Northern Irish coach told a press conference ahead of Saturday's match against Newcastle United.

"He loves this country and being here. If I'm Luis Suarez sitting at home with my wife and family, who absolutely love it here -- they love life in Liverpool and learning the language -- it's arguable he will never have a better season than he has had this.

"Yet he has still come under this scrutiny and criticism.

"That will make you think, no question. But in a couple of days' time when he is more reflective, because there is a shock and anger at the moment, a sense of reality will set in."

For a second time this week, Cameron weighed in on the debate over Suarez's bite on Friday.

"As a dad and as a human being, do I think we should have tough penalties when football players behave like this? Yes," the British Prime Minister told BBC Radio 5 Live.

This is not the first time the Uruguayan striker has been sanctioned for a bite.

Suarez was handed a seven-match ban by Dutch football authorities in 2010 for biting PSV Eindhoven's Otman Bakal while playing for Ajax.

Last season he was hit with an eight-match ban for racially abusing Manchester United's Patrice Evra.