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The numbers behind Arsenal's striker search

By ESPN Staff

FA quash Bowyer red, turn blind eye to Barton

The Football Association have quashed the red card issued to Lee Bowyer last weekend and also opted to take no further action against Joey Barton.

West Ham midfielder Bowyer was dismissed on Saturday by referee Mark Clattenburg for an alleged two-footed tackle on Birmingham captain Damien Johnson in the Premier League clash at Upton Park.

Barton, meanwhile, was involved in an incident with Shaun Maloney during Newcastle's 4-1 defeat at Aston Villa on the same day, when television pictures appeared to show him lashing out at the Villa forward.

But neither will face a suspension or any kind of sanction after the FA decided that no punishments were necessary in both cases.

Hammers manager Alan Curbishley revealed straight after the 1-1 draw with Blues that he had asked Clattenburg to reconsider his decision on the tackle, two minutes from the end of the match at Upton Park.

The London club lodged an official appeal before yesterday's noon deadline and the case was heard by the FA at Soho Square this lunchtime.

Officials sided with West Ham and have overturned Bowyer's dismissal for `serious foul play', meaning an automatic three-match ban will no longer apply.

Barton has also escaped punishment after TV replays of his tussle with Maloney were deemed 'inconclusive'.

Referee Lee Mason did not see the incident at the time but after reviewing footage of the first-half clash he could not say whether it would have warranted a red card.

The issue has, therefore, been dropped by the FA, meaning Barton is free to continue playing for the struggling Magpies.