As three-game ban is confirmed, who should fill the Buendia shaped hole in City’s team?
Emi Buendia’s three-game suspension has been confirmed by the Football Association – so who should replace him in the Norwich City team?
The FA’s online suspension information is updated after receiving the match officials’ report of the game and the Argentine talent’s ban has been listed as three games this morning.
Buendia lunged into an angry tackle on Rs midfielder Josh Scowen in the 71st minute at Carrow Road, seemingly frustrated at a poor tackle on him from Toni Leistner not being punished with a card a minute earlier.
City look unlikely to appeal the suspension, with three-game bans given for ‘violent conduct or serious foul play’, but it leaves them without one of their star players as they aim to seal promotion to the Premier League.
The 22-year-old is set to miss Wednesday night’s home game with Reading, the trip to Wigan on Sunday and the visit of Sheffield Wednesday to Carrow Road on Good Friday.
The £1.5million summer signing from Getafe would then return for a trip to Stoke on Easter Monday, a home clash with Blackburn on Saturday, April 27 (7.30pm) and the final-day journey to play-off contenders Aston Villa.
Daniel Farke’s team are eight points clear of third placed Leeds with six matches remaining, after Teemu Pukki made it 4-0 against QPR with a late goal despite the leaders having 10 men.
FA laws state that one-game bans are served for players receiving a second yellow or for ‘denying a goal or an obvious goal scoring opportunity’.
Two-game bans are activated for ‘using offensive or insulting or abusive language/gestures’ and the top end of the scale is six matches for spitting.
It means head coach Daniel Farke’s run of naming the same starting XI for eight matches, bringing with it eight successive wins, will have to end against struggling Reading on Wednesday night.
So who will come in? Could Kenny McLean be pushed forward to allow Moritz Leitner or Mario Vrancic to play in the deeper midfield role alongside Tom Trybull, or could either slot straight in to that right midfield role?
Or could it be a straight swap with youngster Todd Cantwell, who came on for the final 10 minutes on Saturday, replacing Marco Stiepermann.
Whoever steps in takes on a big responsibility, with Buendia so important recently, scoring his fourth goal in five games on Saturday and also setting up two – taking his overall tally for the season to eight goals and 17 assists from 38 games in all competitions.
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