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Zaha faces extended ban as FA probe red card

Wilfried Zaha (L, pictured in January 2018), could receive an extended ban after the Football Association charged him with improper conduct © AFP/File / Ben STANSALL

LONDON, United Kingdom, Jan 31Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha could receive an extended ban after the Football Association charged him with improper conduct for the way he reacted to being sent-off against Southampton.

The forward was dismissed after 87 minutes in Wednesday’s 1-1 Premier League draw at St Mary’s when he received two yellow cards in quick succession, the second for appearing to sarcastically applaud referee Andre Marriner, who had booked him for a challenge with Saints’ James Ward-Prowse.

“Crystal Palace’s Wilfried Zaha has been charged following the game against Southampton yesterday (January 30, 2019),” said a statement from the FA, English football’s governing body, issued Thursday.

“It is alleged his behaviour following a second-half dismissal amounts to improper conduct. The player has until 9pm on February 5, 2019 to respond to the charge,” the statement added.

Zaha’s dismissal, which came after he had opened the scoring against Southampton, would usually result in a one-match ban.

But the FA could extend it further after the Eagles star appeared to clap Marriner again as he left the pitch.

“All I can do is apologise to the team and the fans for my red card because I could have cost us today,” said Zaha in a post-match Twitter message. “I will learn from it for sure.”

Ten-man Palace held on to secure a draw which moved the south London club four points clear of the relegation places.

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