Football: Mariners to appeal headbutt ban

The incident which saw O'Donovan cop the eight week ban. Photo / Getty
The incident which saw O'Donovan cop the eight week ban. Photo / Getty

Central Coast will appeal the severity of the eight-match A-League ban handed to striker Roy O'Donovan for his New Year's Eve headbutt on Wellington defender Manny Muscat.

Football Federation Australia's (FFA) independent disciplinary committee issued O'Donovan with the second-longest ban in the competition's history on Wednesday for the incident that occurred during the Mariners' 3-1 win over the Phoenix.

The club will argue the sanction was disproportionately harsh compared with the two-week suspension the match review panel gave Muscat for elbowing O'Donovan in the face moments before the headbutt.

In handing down their decision on Wednesday, the committee pointed out that had Muscat been referred to them, a more serious body than the match review panel, they would have deemed his actions worthy of more hefty punishment.

"It's very harsh," coach Tony Walmsley said of O'Donovan's situation. "If you look at precedent, it's an incredibly harsh punishment."

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