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Chris Kamrani
Chris Kamrani covers Real Salt Lake for the Tribune.

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Red cards will stand for RSL as it decides against appeal effort

Looks like the red cards will stand.

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Coach Jason Kreis said today that while RSL considered making use of a new rule that would allow it to appeal red cards, it decided against it, in the case of Fabian Espindola and Jamison Olave — both sent off from a 3-1 loss at San Jose on Saturday night.

In the past, red cards were only revoked in cases of mistaken identity.

But as part of its new partnership with U.S. Soccer to manage its referees, Major League Soccer has created a mechanism for teams to appeal red cards — although it's hardly a carefree proposition. Teams must front a $25,000 cash bond at the beginning of the season that they could lose if they lose their appeals, just to make sure they're not appealing every single thing.

Our friends over at Soccer By Ives detail even more of the deterrents. For example, suspended players could miss an extra game if their team unsuccessfully appeals a red card, and teams could lose appeal rights for the next season and the following one if they're judged to be frivolous.

Teams also lose appeal privileges for the rest of the season if they have two appeals go against them, though they're allowed to appeal as many decisions as they choose.

In any case, Kreis confirmed he had been considering resting Espindola and Olave at FC Dallas on Wednesday night, anyway, since Olave had played every minute of the season until his ejection, and Espinola has played at least 89 minutes six times.

Neither of the ejections seemed likely to be overturned, either.

Maybe he slipped, but Espindola made a two-footed, studs-up challenege on San Jose's Sam Cronin. And Olave's fight for position with San Jose's Steven Lenhart as Lenhart raced in on goal was a bang-bang judgment call that could have gone either way — hardly the kind of obviously egregious mistake that likely would be acknowledged and overturned.



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