West Ham are appealing the red card that referee Mike Dean showed to Sofiane Feghouli after a seemingly innocuous challenge with Manchester United’s Phil Jones. Feghouli looks to avoid a three match ban after being left out of the Algerian African Cup of Nations squad. With a number of key Hammers gone for the tournament in Gabon, Feghouli has a chance to establish himself in the squad. Losing three games to a ban will not help him establish himself in the first team, and he needs a run of good games to get his Hammers career started.
The decision on the play to send of Feghouli for what seemed to be a 50/50 challenge, which Phil Jones disgracefully seemed to simulate injury, has already had plenty of criticism in the press and from the pundits. Slaven Bilic was highly critical of not only the red card in the first part of the match, but also the assistant referee who was unable to spot three Manchester United players that were offsides leading up to the 2nd goal.
With all of the controversy surrounding the red card, the FA has a interesting decision on their hands. They could easily overturn the card on the merits, but they also might want to back an under-fire referee who is in the spotlight. Here’s hoping that the red card is overturned and Feghouli gets an extended run in the first team for West Ham.