City win Kompany red card appeal

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By SAPA

London - Premier League champions Manchester City won their appeal on Tuesday against the red card handed out to captain Vincent Kompany during their 2-0 win away to Arsenal last weekend.

The decision by an independent Football Association regulatory commission overturned a three-game ban for the Belgium international that would have started with this week's league match against Fulham.

Kompany was dismissed 15 minutes from time by referee Mike Dean at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday for using excessive force in tackling Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere, despite getting to the ball first.

Both Kompany and City manager Roberto Mancini made clear their displeasure at Dean's decision after the match, with the 26-year-old central defender taking to his Twitter account to indicate an appeal was likely.

“About the tackle: If the ball is overrun by the opponent and a 50/50 challenge occurs, collision is inevitable,” Kompany tweeted.

“Ultimately I'm a defender: Appeal may work or not. I will never pull out of a challenge, as much as I will never intend to injure a player.

“It's about the team and our team looks strong at the moment. We need to maintain this level of performance.”

Meanwhile, Mancini told reporters: “It was not a sending off Ä

I have seen the TV replays and he goes in with his left foot, with his right foot trailing behind Ä it was not a sending off.”

First-half goals from James Milner and Edin Dzeko secured victory against an Arsenal side who themselves played most of the match a man down after defender Laurent Koscielny saw red for a 10th-minute foul on Dzeko.

Kompany's reprieve is a timely piece of good news for Mancini, with Kolo Toure on international duty with the Ivory Coast at the Africa Cup of Nations and Micah Richards injured.

Kompany aside, Mancini can only call upon Joleon Lescott and Matija Nastasic at centre-back.

The FA have upheld similar appeals in recent weeks, with West Ham United's Carlton Cole, Darron Gibson of Everton and Stoke City midfielder Steven Nzonzi all having red cards rescinded. - Sapa-AFP

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