For the fourth time this season a play made against Sporting Kansas City has led to a retroactive suspension being doled out. This time the MLS Disciplinary Committee has suspended Nathan Smith of the LA Galaxy for a tackle he made against Benny Feilhaber last weekend.
The challenge came in the 59th minute while Kansas City was holding a two goal lead on the Galaxy. Smith came over the ball with his tackle and violently took down Feilhaber who had to leave the game with an injury. Here is the tackle in question:
Benny has since been diagnosed with an ankle sprain and missed Wednesday’s game against the Houston Dynamo. He has been upgraded from “out” to “questionable” for Saturday’s game against the Portland Timbers.
The last time SKC played the Timbers Fanendo Adi got away with a vicious elbow against Ike Opara that he would later be suspended for. Previously this season Bobby Burling picked up a suspension for an elbow on Feilhaber and Chris Schuler got one of his own for a tackle against Gerso Fernandes.
Thank goodness Benny’s injury isn’t as bad as it initially appeared but it brings up a larger point. These fouls keep happening to Kansas City and they have gotten no benefit from them. They have gone 247 minutes where they should have been up a man when they were not.
247 minutes for us. Next highest is 111. Even though Toronto has 3 it was only 67 minutes. pic.twitter.com/vUJCyhdlaw— Greg Boege (@SombraAla) June 30, 2017
While it’s good the offending team/player are ultimately punished, maybe it would be better to punish them in the subsequent meeting between the teams. That way whoever is the random next opponent wouldn’t benefit and the offending team/player would actually have to play down a man instead of simply be without that player.
Obviously this would be challenging to pull off as some teams only play once in a season or if it happened in the second meeting they may not play again until next year. As it stands now though, the punishment isn’t harsh enough.