By PHIL THOMAS
BRENDAN RODGERS has accused the FA of hypocrisy for trying to throw Luis Suarez out with the garbage.
The Liverpool striker was banned for 10 games for biting Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic.
Yet boss Rodgers rapped: “The punishment has been against the man rather than the incident. That is my underlying feeling.
“In the cold light of day, it was violent conduct — the club admitted it, Luis admitted it and understood he needed to be punished.
“He fell well below the standards of this club. But that doesn’t mean he should be thrown to the garbage.
“I certainly won’t be prepared to do that. What we have got is a punishment with absolutely no intention towards helping the rehabilitation of the player. That’s what is disappointing.”
In 2006, Spurs’ Jermain Defoe escaped with just a yellow card for biting West Ham’s Javier Mascherano, while Chester’s Sean Hessey got five games for a similar offence on Stockport’s Liam Dickinson.
Rodgers insisted: “One player got a five-game ban and one player wasn’t sent off or anything. He went on to score 18 goals that season, 17 after the incident, and was then chosen for England.”
Rodgers is also convinced there was no chance the three-man Commission could be unaffected by the call to throw the book at Suarez.
Even Downing Street got involved and Rodgers added: “We’d been given clear indications by the FA that there would be an independent, or so-called independent, case put together. It’s the first time I’ve heard an independent inquiry being dictated to by so many people.
“It was put the day before by the FA that it would be more than three games, so there’s a prejudice straight away. We saw former players all having an opinion and the Prime Minister even chipped in.
“If you have those high-profile figures making those sorts of statements, there is no doubt there will be a bias. It’s human nature.
“Listen, it could have been 12 games, with six suspended, looking at his future behaviour.
“I don’t think anyone could have argued with that. But you have to put the carrot in front of the player to help him improve his behaviour.
“I look in his face and I see a genuine guy who is bitterly disappointed. It will take time for him to reflect, time to understand why others have not been punished.
“But, in a couple of days, a sense of reality will set in. Once he knows the support he has here it will make him think differently.
“Luis is very much a player I believe will be here. I’ve had a lot of discussions with his agent Pere Guardiola and Luis’ representatives have been very happy with what the club has done to support him.
“I do not feel he has let me down one bit.”