Chelsea have expressed disappointment after the Football Association handed their star player Diego Costa a three-match ban for violent conduct during his side's Premier League victory over Arsenal. The striker was involved in an incident and television footage showed him striking Gunners defender Laurent Koscielny twice at the end of the first half.
The Spain international's ban will start with immediate effect, which means he will miss the Blues' Capital One Cup third round clash against Walsall. After the match at Stamford Bridge, Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho said the former Atletico Madrid man deserved to be the man-of-the match for his display against Arsenal.
"We are extremely disappointed with the FA Regulatory Commission's decision to suspend Diego Costa. We will await their written reasons before commenting further," a statement read on Chelsea's official website.
Arsenal defender Gabriel Paulista was shown straight red for appearing to have kicked Costa before the break. However, the Football Association have now overturned his ban, but will face an improper conduct charge for his reaction towards Costa.
Meanwhile, former Chelsea forward Tony Cascarino believes the FA's verdict on Costa will not make him a target for the opposition defenders. He claims the Blues' style of play will make it harder for the opposition clubs.
"You don't need to target him - I think he can wind himself up. He's one of those players that is probably quiet as a mouse in the dressing room and is a different person on the pitch," Cascarino told Sky Sports.
"What opposing managers will say is, 'don't get involved with him'. If I was Arsene Wenger I'd be taking Olivier Giroud to one side and saying, 'you got sent off for far less than that in Zagreb' and that he should bring some of what Costa does into his game."
"The way Chelsea play, they are a fully committed side and they play a high-tempo game, they're in your faces and they make it as hard for you as possible," he added.