FIFA Bites Back at Suarez, Suspends Him for Nine Games

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A combo of two photos from June 24, 2014 showing Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini, left, showing an apparent bitemark and Uruguay forward Luis Suarez holding his teeth after the World Cup incident.Credit: AFP

The FIFA disciplinary committee bit back at Uruguay's Luis Suarez for taking a chunk out of his Italian rival Tuesday at the World Cup, soccer's governing body announced Thursday.

The committee concluded that Suarez was guilty of "an act of unsporting behavior toward another player" and suspended him for nine official matches, starting with Saturday's World Cup fixture against Colombia. He is also banned from taking part in any kind of soccer-related activity for the next four months, according to FIFA in a statement issued on its website.

“Such behavior cannot be tolerated on any football pitch, and in particular not at a FIFA World Cup when the eyes of millions of people are on the stars on the field," said Claudio Sulser, chairman of the FIFA Disciplinary Committee. "The Disciplinary Committee took into account all the factors of the case and the degree of Mr Suárez’s guilt in accordance with the relevant provisions of the code."

Moreover, FIFA has prohibited him from "entering the confines of any stadium during the period of the ban" and from entering any stadium where Uruguay's national team is playing during his nine-match suspension.

Finally, the committee ordered Suárez to pay a fine in the amount of 100,000 Swiss francs ($112,000).

FIFA notified Suarez and the Uruguayan football association on Thursday. There was no immediate reaction from him or the team.

Suarez has been banned twice before for similar biting incidents with Dutch club Ajax Amsterdam and Liverpool. He was given a 10-match ban by the Premier League for biting Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanovic during the 2012-13 season.

Meanwhile, the biting incident has become a sensation on social media, with parodies portraying Suarez in a range of disguises from Jaws, Dracula, and Hannibal Lecter to a dog in a neck cone and a bottle opener.

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