Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina has leapt to the defence of Luis Suarez, describing the striker's ten-game suspension as "absurd, out of proportion and unfair".
Suarez was hit with the ban for biting Branislav Ivanovic during Liverpool's 2-2 Anfield draw with Chelsea at the weekend.
The incident has polarised opinion, and it has been suggested that the striker is considering his Premier League future.
Liverpool managing director Ian Ayre said he was shocked by the length of the suspension, and that sentiment has been echoed by Spain international Reina.
"I consider myself a friend of Luis. He is being treated differently, I don't know if it's because he's Uruguayan or because he's had a previous episode like this," Reina told Spanish radio station Cadena Cope.
"He knows full well that what he did was wrong, but a ten-game ban seems to me absurd, out of proportion and unfair.
"It seems that the people making the decisions have got it in for Luis a little bit. That's the way I see it. I am not justifying what he did, but the punishment is very disproportionate.
"He knows he was in the wrong, he knows he has made a mistake, but the treatment is completely out of place.
"Those who know Luis know that he is the complete opposite [off the pitch], he is a magnificent person and a great team-mate.
"But because of the way he plays, he is aggressive and very competitive. He plays like a street player, and sometimes the way he is gets him into trouble."