United accept Rio’s ban

Manchester United have withdrawn their appeal against the extra game suspension handed down to Rio Ferdinand for lashing out at Hull City's Craig Fagan last month.

The 31-year-old centre-half picked up an automatic three-match ban for his actions at Old Trafford on January 23, while an initial appeal was deemed to be frivolous by the FA, who added another game to the punishment.

That prompted United to consider a second appeal against the sanctions, but the Premier League champions have now opted to accept Ferdinand's fate.

The soon to be new England captain has already missed wins over Arsenal and Portsmouth and will also sit out league clashes with Aston Villa and Everton.

United boss Sir Alex Ferguson had earlier hinted that his club would lodge a second appeal, saying:"We have to decide whether to appeal because there are conflicting ways in which these decisions are being viewed.

"I watched the game between Leyton Orient and Charlton on Monday and there was an elbow on the Charlton player three times as he was running with the ball. But nothing has happened with that.

"There is a lot of confusion."

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