Dembele hit with six-match ban

Mousa Dembele will miss Tottenham’s final two games of the season after he received a six-match ban from the Football Association for violent conduct.

The Belgium international was charged for an incident during the 2-2 draw with Chelsea at Stamford Bridge on Monday night, which saw 12 players booked – nine of them from Spurs.

Television replays showed Dembele gouging Blues striker Diego Costa in the eye as the two sets of players squared up towards the end of the first half in an ill-tempered London derby.

The 28-year-old accepted the charge but contested the FA’s assertion that the usual three-game suspension was “clearly insufficient”, with an independent disciplinary panel subsequently extending the punishment by another three matches.

Dembele will therefore sit out the fixtures against Southampton and Newcastle, as well as the first four outings of the 2016/17 campaign.

A statement from the FA read: “Mousa Dembele will serve a six-match suspension with immediate effect after he committed an act of violent conduct which was not seen by the match officials but caught on video.

“The Tottenham Hotspur midfielder accepted the charge but denied The FA’s claim that the standard punishment of three matches which would otherwise apply to this offence was clearly insufficient.

“An Independent Regulatory Commission upheld The FA’s claim at a hearing today [Friday 6 May 2016] and ordered that an additional three-match suspension was appropriate.”

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