By CALEB SONNELAND
Much scrutiny has been made of the disciplinary action taken by the MLS this season.
The latest actions taken see suspensions for LA's Chris Birchall and Chicago's Diego Cháves while San Joe head coach Frank Yallop gets a $500 slap on the wrist for "conduct unbecoming of a professional" during the Earthquakes match against the Union over the weekend.
Birchall will serve a two-game suspension for his fierce tackle on Patrick Nyarko in the dying minutes of the Galaxy/Fire match. The ban means that the midfielder will miss Los Angeles's fixture against Columbus on the 20th and the Vancouver Whitecaps 10 days later. Birchall will also have to fork over $500 for "showing utter disregard for an opponents safety." He was given a yellow card for his tackle.
Perhaps Birchall's tackle was inspired by the Fire's Cháves who, minutes earlier, roughly took down Landon Donovan, resulting in a yellow card for the striker. But that wasn't deemed enough for Cháves, who today received a one-game ban and a $250 fine for "endangering the safety of his opponent." The suspension means that the player will miss the Fire's upcoming match against the Portland Timbers on Saturday.
Frank Yallop was also dished out punishment for being sent off from the sideline by the referee in San Jose's match against Philadelphia. He was ordered to hand over $500 by the MLS Disciplinary Committee, and that fine, on top of the sending off fine, brings Yallop's total to $1000. The dismissal from the game means that the head coach will not be allowed to be on the sideline or in any sort of communication with the Earthquakes' bench for the upcoming clash with the Columbus Crew.
What do you think of the latest disciplinary actions? Are these justified punishments?
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