According to a Washington Post report, the Major League Soccer disciplinary committee is investigating Dwayne DeRosario’s head-butt to Philadelphia Union’s midfielder Danny Cruz. The head-butt occurred during a preseason game between DC United and the Union.
Unlike during the regular season, yellow cards and red cards from the preseason do not carry over to the regular season. However, the MLS think this is a unique situation apparently.
If he is suspended, he will miss United’s season opener against Houston Dynamo and also possibly the March 9 match against Real Salt Lake.
DeRosario spoke briefly about the event under investigation.
“It was a scuffle,” De Rosario said. “It was one of those unfortunate things.”
Just for the record, the only people who saw the game were those in Orlando as the game was not streamed live.
If indeed DeRosario is suspended, he can appeal the sentence and all discipline appeals are heard by MLS commissioner Don Garber. In his 12 years in the MLS, DeRasorio has only been given two red cards, so this behavior is not habitual for DeRosario.
Furthermore, DC United manager Ben Olsen will have to come up with a backup plan if DeRasorio is indeed suspended. Look for Lionard Pajoy to be the lone forward in the formation, which is the same thing they did last year when DeRasorio was out due to an injury.
In the end, this suspension discussion brings up a new issue. Should yellow cards or red cards from preseason carry over the regular season, or should instances be looked at on a case by case basis to see if a suspension is indeed needed.
I personally think there should be a change to the MLS discipline policy during preseason whatever that may look like. I am in favor of not necessarily having all cards accumulate and carry over into the regular season, but having the disciplinary committee look at extreme incidents like a player head-butting another player.