Man Utd, Chelsea and Liverpool stars at risk of two-match Prem ban | Football | Sport

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The likes of Manchester United, Chelsea, Liverpool and Newcastle could be without some key stars at a crucial stage of the season as they run the risk of a two-match suspension. Premier League rules state that players who receive 10 yellow cards in a season are handed a ban for two games, potentially plunging teams into chaos.

Only one player in the entire league has reached double-digit booking so far this campaign, Fulham’s tough-tackling midfielder Joao Palhinha. The Portuguese hardman picked up a 10th yellow card in the 2-1 defeat to Aston Villa and subsequently will miss matches against Manchester United and Brighton.

However, two players have already racked up nine yellow cards, Newcastle’s Bruno Guimaraes and Chelsea striker Nicolas Jackson. Guimaraes is crucial to Eddie Howe’s side as they strive for a European place, missing him in addition to their injured trio of Joelinton, Elliott Anderson and Joe Willock would put a much greater strain on the likes of Sean Longstaff and Lewis Miley.

Jackson bizarrely picked up his ninth booking while on the bench during Chelsea’s 3-1 win over Crystal Palace after being punished for leaving the technical area to celebrate a late goal. The striker’s disciplinary record has far from impressed Mauricio Pochettino, who has already spoken with the player, to little avail.

“We were talking about it today because we were in a meeting with him and Enzo (Fernandez),’” said Pochettino in September. ‘I told him for a striker to get four yellow cards only for protesting or talking to the referee, it’s so easy, so cheap, getting yellow cards like that. Sometimes you need to get a yellow card in different actions, but not because of that.

“If it keeps happening and he gets suspended he is going to put the team in a very difficult situation. He needs to be clever and not to protest to the referees in this way, but he understood. Jackson is 21 also and he’s young. He needs to learn, needs to improve, needs to settle himself.”

A second influential Newcastle star is two bookings away from a two-match ban in Anthony Gordon, while Darwin Nunez has as many cautions. With Liverpool walking wounded currently, including the Uruguayan striker who missed Wednesday’s win over Luton through injury, they can ill afford to lose more players through suspension.

Wataru Endo is another player at risk after seven bookings already this season. United captain Bruno Fernandes is also three more yellows away from a two-match ban, with Chelsea stars Cole Palmer and Moises Caicedo running the same risk.

Manchester City have struggled when Rodri has been unavailable over the past two seasons and will be desperate for him to avoid three more yellow cards and a suspension during their title run-in.


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