Having started and scored the all-important equaliser for Crystal Palace against West Ham, it’s fair to say that Wilfried Zaha had the last laugh against the Irons but many of them were left angry at the fact he was even playing at all after picking up a two-game ban from the FA.
After initially being given a one-game suspension for picking up two yellow cards in Palace’s 1-1 draw with Southampton at St Mary’s back in late January, the 26-year-old was issued with a further suspension from the game’s governing body for misconduct having sarcastically clapped referee Andre Marriner before and after his second booking. In most circumstances, the club and player would have taken the charge and served it without an appeal but in this particular case, those behind the scenes in SE25 felt the need to highlight the shambolic display from Marriner which led Zaha to feel so aggrieved at the time of the sending off.
Quite how the club have gone about pleading their case or indeed put it forward in a further appeal is something to speculated over but given the current procedures in place, Zaha’s ban has to be suspended whilst they look at the appeal and decide whether or not he has a case. Should they indeed side with the winger (unlikely I know) then we will all carry on as before, whilst a call to uphold their original decision would see him miss Doncaster in the FA Cup this Sunday.
Also though zaha was banned but it appears he can play.. odds on him and batshuayi both to score?
— Over Land And Sea (@WestHam_OLAS) February 9, 2019
Thought zaha was banned?
— max (@maxonthedlr3) February 9, 2019
Have I missed something why’s Zaha not banned?
— Ricky Forrest (@rickwhufc) February 9, 2019
Zaha should be banned 🤔
McArthur should have been sent off 🤔 #CRYWHU
— Dan Hill (@danjameshill) February 9, 2019
#CRYWHU how is zaha playing today? Thought he was banned.
— Higgo (@Mark_Higgins69) February 9, 2019
Zaha should’ve been banned while his appeal is being looked at
— Rob utton (@Strictlyrobbo) February 9, 2019
If Zaha banned is admitted does that cancel out his goal? And then his two game ban.
— nobbly bobbly (@contact400) February 9, 2019
Palace wouldn’t win if zaha wasn’t playing. I thought he was banned for this match.
— Thomas Williamson (@Tom_241210) February 9, 2019
Zaha banned for 2 games serves 1 then appeals the 2nd and therefore is allowed to play and miss an F A Cup game. U r either banned or your not.
— WACCA147 (@Wacca1970) February 10, 2019
The most likely outcome from my perspective would see them stand firm over their original two-game ban whilst adding another one for good measure following Zaha’s decision to appeal which would see him forced to sit out our trip to face Leicester City too. In many ways, it’s unlikely to matter what Zaha and his representatives say, as to overturn their own call would open up a can of worms they’re not too keen on tampering with inside the corridors of power at the FA.
In many ways, I can understand West Ham fans’ frustration given the original ruling but the system itself is at fault rather than Zaha and Palace, who simply used the tools available to them to appeal against what they felt was an unjust ban. How it ends up is something no one can be quite sure of just yet, even though we’ve all got a pretty good idea.