West Ham United have instructed one of Britain's top lawyers in a bid to overturn Andy Carroll's three-match suspension, according to reports.
• Thorne: Carroll's Swan upping
Carroll, 25, was sent off by referee Howard Webb in the second half of the Hammers’ 2-0 win on Saturday after catching Chico Flores with his arm.
The Hammers lodged an appeal against the decision, but the ban was upheld by the Football Association on Tuesday. The ban rules Carroll out for the rest of February, when West Ham face Aston Villa, fellow relegation strugglers Norwich and Southampton.
DISGRACEFUL!!! ��— Andy Carroll (@AndyTCarroll) February 4, 2014
Both papers report that the club have hired Lord Pannick QC to look for ways to challenge the decision.
Pannick is a crossbench peer in the House of Lords, who in the past has acted for the FA in its case against Wayne Rooney's agent, Paul Stretford, in 2007.
The 57-year-old, who writes a bi-weekly law column for The Times, also represented Chelsea when they were accused of 'tapping up' then-Arsenal defender Ashley Cole in 2006.
After the Swansea match, West Ham manager Sam Allardyce described the red card as "an injustice."