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UEFA bans Eduardo for 2 Champions League matches

UEFA banned Arsenal striker Eduardo da Silva for two Champions League matches yesterday for diving to earn a penalty in a qualifying match against Celtic.
UEFA's disciplinary panel made the ruling after a teleconference.

The panel said the Brazilian-born Croatia forward deceived the referee when he got the penalty decision after a challenge by Celtic goalkeeper Artur Boruc last Wednesday.

Eduardo scored from the spot kick and Arsenal won the match 3-1, progressing to the group stage 5-1 on aggregate.

Eduardo will miss Arsenal's Group H matches at Standard Liege on Sept. 16 and at home to Olympiakos on Sept. 29.

Arsenal can appeal within three days.

Arsenal believes that Eduardo, who broke his leg in February 2008, may have taken evasive action to avoid a repeat of the serious injury that sidelined him for a year.

UEFA has previously disciplined only one player for cheating a referee since the Article 10 rule was introduced three years ago.

In September 2007, Lithuania striker Saulius Mikoliunas was banned for two matches after video evidence showed he dived to earn a penalty against Scotland.

The Scottish Football Association, which was involved in that case and has pressed UEFA on Celtic's behalf, believes video evidence should be used more often.

"The last couple of years I've been pushing very strongly to deal with simulation in football," SFA chief executive Gordon Smith said. "I think it's gone too far and I have taken it up with UEFA, FIFA and even IFAB (world football's rule-making body) to try and deal retrospectively with cases of simulation in the game."


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