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By ESPN Staff

Premier League back Charlton ban plea

Charlton's bid to overturn the extra one-game suspension handed to defender Osei Sankofa is being backed by the Premier League.

Right-back Sankofa missed last weekend's FA Cup tie against Nottingham Forest after receiving a one-game ban following his sending off in the 4-0 defeat at Arsenal on January 2.

But when the club appealed to the Football Association against his red card the governing body labelled the appeal `frivolous' and doubled the ban to two games, ruling Sankofa out of Saturday's Premiership match against Middlesbrough.

Now the situation could end up in court with the Addicks, supported by the Premier League.

'After studying the match video, and being advised by the Premier League to appeal, we did so and lost,' explained Charlton chief executive Peter Varney.

'But while we fully accept the right of the FA not to uphold our appeal, the decision to then call it `frivolous' and double the ban is outrageous, and that's the view of the Premier League as well as ourselves.'

Sankofa was shown a red card for a pull back on Robin van Persie. Charlton argued it was not a professional foul as Talal El Karkouri was also on hand and was arguably the last man.

Varney added: 'Keith Hackett and John Morton, who manage the elite referees group for the Premier League, plus the match delegates and senior officials of the Premier League, all advised us that we should challenge the decision to double the suspension.

'The FA has refused to give us an explanation as to why they consider our appeal was frivolous - it was most certainly not frivolous and even officials of the FA have accepted we had grounds for an appeal.

'We are therefore consulting with lawyers with a view to challenging this decision in the courts, and we are supported fully in this action by the Premier League.'

A Premier League statement tonight read: 'We understand Charlton's frustration in regard to the extra match suspension for Osei Sankofa and share their view that the appeal for his dismissal against Arsenal was neither frivolous nor an abuse of process.

'We have, and continue to support Charlton's efforts to get the FA to reconsider this aspect of their decision through all avenues possible under FA rules.'