Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini has said the ban FIFA handed down to Luis Suarez is ‘excessive’ and that he feels no anger towards the controversial Uruguay striker.
Suarez was given longest sanction imposed at a World Cup by soccer’s governing body on Thursday, suspended from all football-related activity for four months and banned for nine international matches for biting Chiellini in their final Group D match in Natal on Tuesday.
Suarez will miss the first two months of Liverpool’s Premier League and Champions League campaigns, and may not appear for his country in a non-friendly match again until 2016.
“Now inside me there’s no feelings of joy, revenge or anger against Suarez for an incident that happened on the pitch and that’s done,” Juventus centre back Chiellini said in a statement on his website (giorgiochiellini.com).
“There only remain the anger and the disappointment about the match.”
“At the moment my only thought is for Luis and his family, because they will face a very difficult period.
“I have always considered unequivocal the disciplinary interventions by the competent bodies, but at the same time I believe that the proposed formula is excessive.
“I sincerely hope that he will be allowed, at least, to stay close to his team mates during the games because such a ban is really alienating for a player.”
Uruguay won the match 1-0 and advanced to meet Colombia in a round of 16 tie on Saturday, but Suarez, 27, will miss the contest and the rest of the tournament after his ban.
The defeat meant Italy missed out on the knock-out stage.
FIFA also fined Suarez 100,000 Swiss francs ($112,000) after 10 hours of deliberations by its Disciplinary Committee.