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Eduard Atuesta’s red card upheld, Ante Razov suspended

Concacaf hands down four-game suspension to LAFC assistant for dust-up with Miguel Herrera.

Soccer: 2020 Scotiabank Concacaf Champions League - Semifinals-Club America (MEX) at Los Angeles FC (USA) Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports

Concacaf handed down a four-game suspension to LAFC assistant coach Ante Razov and upheld Eduard Atuesta’s red card on Monday. That means neither the coach nor player will be available for Tuesday’s Concacaf Champions League final against Tigres UANL. Razov won’t be allowed on the sidelines for any Concacaf-sanctioned events until he completes the suspension.

Now former Club America manager Miguel Herrera was also suspended a total of five games, possibly contributing to his firing earlier in the day. Herrera was suspended four games for the incident with Razov — for which both were ejected from Saturday’s match — and was given an additional game’s suspension for continuing to coach from the stands using a walkie-talkie.

LAFC had lobbied to get Atuesta’s suspension overturned after video seemed to show Club America goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa embellishing the contact that got Atuesta red-carded from the match and precipitated the halftime dustup between Razov and Herrera. LAFC managed to overcome a 1-0 deficit despite playing most of the second half down a man.

From the sound of it, Concacaf did not give serious consideration to overturning the red card despite the evidence as the governing body essentially said it had no standing.

“The regulations of the SCCL clearly state that referee decisions on the field are final,” Concacaf wrote in the explanation of its decision. “This is in line with FIFA regulations for their competitions and has been in place throughout the tournament.

“From an integrity perspective, the Confederation cannot change the rules at this late stage of the competition. For this reason, it is not possible to overturn red cards awarded in the 2020 SCCL.”

LAFC have gone 2-4-0 in matches Atuesta didn’t play this year.