Sunday, April 20, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Montréal Impact defender Nelson Rivas suspended two additional games for headbutting Philadelphia Union forward Antoine Hoppenot

Major League Soccer's disciplinary committee has delivered its verdict on Montréal Impact defender Nelson Rivas' headbutt of Union forward Antoine Hoppenot this past Saturday.

Montréal Impact defender Nelson Rivas suspended two additional games for headbutting Philadelphia Union forward Antoine Hoppenot

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Major League Soccer's disciplinary committee has delivered its verdict on Montréal Impact defender Nelson Rivas' headbutt of Union forward Antoine Hoppenot this past Saturday.

The punishment is not as stiff as many expected.

Rivas will sit for two additional games on top of the red card he received in the wake of the incident, and he has been fined an undisclosed amount (as is always the case when MLS players are fined by the league).

There was no additional punishment haded to Union forward Jack McInerney for his relatiatory shove of Rivas. Nor was Hoppenot punished for the initial contact that took him and Rivas to the turf.

You can watch the sequence of incidents here.

Among the most prominent reactions to the news across the league was this tweet from top MLS agent Ron Waxman:

MLS Disc Comm is a joke. Suspends Rivas only 2 additional games for vicious headbutt. Same as Petke got a few years ago for words with ref.

Personally, I was expecting a three-game additional suspension instead of two games. I can certainly understand fans who are frustrated.

That said, it is worth noting that the last time there was a headbutting incident in MLS, the league also handed down a two-additional-game suspension.

It happened last year, when Real Salt Lake's Kyle Beckerman did the honors to the Chicago Fire's Daniel Paladini. You can watch the incident here.

Jonathan Tannenwald Philly.com
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The Goalkeeper is your home for the latest news about the Philadelphia Union, Major League Soccer, U.S. national teams and the rest of the world's most popular sport. It's also a place for fans to gather and celebrate the culture of soccer and its unique place on the sports landscape.

Reach Jonathan at jtannenwald@phillynews.com or 215-854-2330.

Jonathan Tannenwald Philly.com
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