Luis Suarez told FIFA’s disciplinary panel that he did not deliberately bite Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini at the World Cup.
“In no way it happened how you have described, as a bite or intent to bite,” the Uruguay striker wrote in Spanish in a letter dated June 25.
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“After the impact … I lost my balance, making my body unstable and falling on top of my opponent,” Suarez wrote in his submission to the panel which met Wednesday, one day after Uruguay beat Italy 1-0 in a decisive group-stage match.
“At that moment I hit my face against the player leaving a small bruise on my cheek and a strong pain in my teeth,” Suarez said. However, the seven-man panel which met on Wednesday evening dismissed the argument.
The bite was “deliberate, intentional and without provocation’,’ the ruling stated in paragraph No. 26 of the panel’s conclusions.
Suarez was banned for nine Uruguay matches and four months from all football. He was also fined 100,000 Swiss francs ($112,000).
The ruling confirmed that referee Marco Rodriguez of Mexico acknowledged in his match report that he missed Suarez’s bite. So did his two assistants and the fourth official.