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Balotelli out of derby after accepting red card

Mario Balotelli will miss Wednesday's derby match against Manchester United after accepting his red card against West Brom, but Manchester City have appealed against a statutory three-match ban.

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Balotelli, who had already been booked, was shown a straight red card for violent conduct after appearing to kick out at Youssouf Mulumbu during Sunday's 2-0 victory at the Hawthorns.

City claim the punishment is "excessive" for the severity of the foul and will have their appeal heard by the Independent Regulatory Commission on Tuesday.

The FA said in a statement: "The FA can confirm that Manchester City FC have today submitted a claim that, following the dismissal of Mario Balotelli for violent conduct, the standard punishment of an automatic three match ban is clearly excessive."

However, under FA rules a player dismissed for violent conduct or serious foul play must be banned for three matches. Only offences such as using insulting or abusive language - two matches - or denying a goal or an obvious goal-scoring opportunity - one match - carry lesser punishments.

Balotelli scored twice against the Baggies before his 63rd minute dismissal and after the match City boss Roberto Mancini railed against referee Lee Probert's decision.

"I absolutely do not agree with the referee about this sending-off," said Mancini. "A red card for what?

"He played a fantastic game, he scored two goals, but the sending off was very strange. I want to know why it was a direct red card. For me this is not correct and the referee must explain."


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