Premiership duo Joey Barton and Paul Konchesky will both sit out this weekend's action after having their appeals against the red cards they received last weekend rejected by the Football Association.
At a hearing in London this lunchtime, it was decided referee Mike Riley had not acted incorrectly in dismissing Barton for serious foul play when he launched himself towards Abdoulaye Faye near the end of Manchester City's home defeat to Bolton.
And it was also ruled Konchesky rightly received his marching orders for a second bookable offence when he chopped down Wayne Routledge, denying the Fulham forward a clear goalscoring opportunity, during West Ham's goalless draw at Craven Cottage on the same day.
It means both men will miss this weekend's clash between West Ham and City.
In addition, Barton is ruled out of the New Year's Day home encounter with Everton, plus the FA Cup tie at Sheffield Wednesday on January 7.
Having been able to play Barton in the vital win at Sheffield United on Boxing Day because of the delay in the appeals process over the Festive period, it could be argued City have gained some kind of a result anyway.
However, Blues boss Stuart Pearce insisted his club did not just launch their appeal in an effort to bend the rules.
'We would not have appealed unless we were hopeful about Joey,' he said before the verdict was announce.
'We have not done it for the sake of it and we did not do it just to free a player up.
'We did it because we believe there was no danger to the opponent and I felt, at worst, it was a yellow card.'
Having collected his fourth booking of the campaign at Bramall Lane, Barton remains in danger of having to serve an automatic one-match suspension, which he will trigger if he collects another caution before the end of February.
Meanwhile, Preston striker Daniele Dichio also had an unfair dismissal claim rejected and will sit out the Championship promotion hopefuls' next three games following his dismissal against West Brom on Boxing Day.
Southend's Efe Sodje withdrew his appeal prior to the hearing, meaning he will also sit out the Shrimpers next three matches after he was sent off at Norwich.