MLS suspends, fines Joseph

JosephFCD (Getty images)

Shalrie Joseph is the MLS disciplinary committee's latest victim.

The New England Revolution captain was suspended a game and fined an undisclosed amount for his scissoring tackle from behind on FC Dallas' Ricardo Villar on Thursday night, one that drew a yellow card during the game. As a result, Joseph will miss New England's home match against D.C. United this weekend.

Villar was forced from the match after the tackle, one that occurred as Joseph took a heavy touch, allowing Villar to sneak in front of him to try and win the ball back. It appeared that as Joseph went to take his next touch, Villar stepped in and got chopped down in the process.

Joseph joins Houston's Adam Moffat, Dallas' Jair Benitez, D.C.'s Brandon McDonald and Vancouver's Atiba Harris as players whose challenges have been reviewed and retroactively disciplined by the league.

Video of Joseph's tackle can be seen here.

Do you think Joseph deserved further discipline for his challenge?

Share your thoughts below.

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55 Responses to MLS suspends, fines Joseph

  1. chris says:

    let em play

  2. No Mullan?

    You know you have a gambling problem when you lose money on the MLS disciplinary committee midweek announcement.

    Still…MLS, it’s your fault. By not having a midweek game, “u be messin with my paper!”

    I’m still not out of the denial/accountability stage of my gambling issues :)

  3. PD says:

    there was no attempt to get the ball, and once could argue this was more dangerous than what one would call a “professional foul”.

    If this is the kind of decision making they are trying to discourage then it’s a good call, but I could see why other might find this call a harsh one.

  4. Luis F says:

    I think it’s a 50/50 call for the committee. It lacked vicious intent, but it was a desperate tackle made after Joseph realized he’s lost possession in a bad part of the field. It could easily have injured Villar seriously. I guess we’ll know more about that once more is known about the injury.

    If I’m on the committee, I think the fine and suspension are warranted if we’re trying to cut down on these kinds of tackles. If the League isn’t perceived as having a problem, then I wouldn’t suspend, but I would fine.

  5. Dustin says:

    What about the players that get injured by these tackles? How can they play?

  6. Anthony says:

    DC United probably wont mind this

  7. Spank says:

    This committee needs to take it easy. They should use the FA as their guide. In the case of Balotelli there wasn’t any further punishment because the ref had seen what had occurred and given the free kick. Any further punishment would have been deemed re-refereeing. In this case as well the ref had seen the foul, given a yellow and that’s what should stand. If it was that severe then Joseph should have been shown a straight red.

  8. ted says:

    Uh the FA shouldve actually probably followed the MLS’ cue in balotelli’s case imo

    cant help feel mls is getting a bit retrospective-punishment-happy tho

  9. Ricky B .Free says:

    EPL refs are a joke. The ref saw Balotelli´s foul but didnt show him the red. Balotelli shouldnt have been playing past the 20 minute mark.

  10. Joe says:

    The ref and the FA should be fined for not sending Balotelli off and suspending him. If Song’s foot doesn’t release from the ground, his career is over.

    Joseph’s tackle could have been shown red if you follow the law directly. Tackle from behind.

    The committee got it right.

  11. Joe says:

    Also, from the player’s standpoint, it’s an easy problem to solve. Don’t do stupid sh*t that will get you in trouble.

    Everyone is so worried about the committee and their actions. They’ll have nothing to do if the players stop making stupid challenges.

  12. Dustin says:

    The funny thing is that Balotelli did get sent of in that match. After 2! more bad tackles. If he would have been sent off for this tackle he would not have had the chance to potentialy injure others. He was clearly out of control for most of the match.

  13. Benefit of the Doubt says:

    To me it looks like Joseph was trying to reach out and pass the ball away rather than going in for a tackle. If the point of retroactive punishments are to curb dangerous tackles I think they should be reserved for when their is clear and malicious intent by the tackler.

  14. MemRook says:

    I get what the league is trying to do, and I applaud them for it. I do. However, they had better stay consistent with not only their punishments, but the types of incidents they’re punishing. The league will be under a microscope from now on when it comes to these decisions and everyone will know when they don’t get it right. Credibility goes a LONG way, and they’d do wekk to keep theirs intact.

  15. Jeff says:

    How is Villar doing?

  16. MemRook says:

    They’d do *well* to keep theirs intact

  17. MemRook says:

    Btw, my personal view on this incident is tha Joseph in no way meant to tackle Villar; I don’t think Shalrie even expected Villar to be there at the moment.

  18. PD says:

    this is sarcasm, right?

  19. Ben says:

    Seems a little harsh to me…it looked pretty inadvertent. If Joseph gets this suspension, makes me wonder if Drew Moor or Brian Mullen will get some additional punishment for their altercations with Luis Gil on Saturday.

  20. ted says:

    So can i get a retroactive suspension for songo’o for when he broke kevin alston’s nose broken?

  21. Jonathon says:

    Why would Mullan get a suspension? What did you see that would warrant a suspension for Mullan?

  22. Puffer says:

    So I guess a yellow card now = a fine and suspension? MLS is based on grit, not technically-gifted soccer for the most part. I don’t know where suspensions like this leave the league…

  23. sandtrout says:

    Totally agree. It doesn’t look to me that Joseph even sees the other player when he’s already reaching out with his leg. Seems like overkill by the league to me. It was a foul. It was at least a yellow, but it was certainly not a Mullanesque revenge foul or malicious.

  24. Supsam says:

    Last season: “MLS will never attract talent when its the talented stars like Morales, Ferraira and Zakuani that are frequently targeted but left unprotected”

    This season: “MLS is getting too carried away with all these fines and suspensions”

    The league just cannot please some people. At worst, it pisses fans and teams alike, but at best………it makes a player hesitate go for a Mondaini or Mullan tackle. I repeat, at best, it prevents another Zakuani incident from occurring. Keep it up MLS HQ!

  25. Puffer says:

    Players in leagues all over the world get injured from bad tackles. The Shalrie Joseph tackle was not bad. MLS is overreacting because their setup does not allow for the same depth as other leagues

  26. julio says:

    Didnt look like much to me. I dont believe he brought the training leg through

    I have a better Idea though. Since the onfield refs only gave it a yellow at the time and MLS is basically saying they were wrong, I think the refs should be fined and suspended a game for blowing the call.

    Wouldnt it be something if the league EVER came down on the second rate referees this league has. This after the fact suspensions should only be done in extreme cases. Fix the refereeing problem and this discussion doesnt need to happen

  27. RLW2020 says:

    ya i didn’t see anything from those two either…

  28. RLW2020 says:

    +1, got to be able to read thru the impulse and biased remarks. Within balance this is a good thing.

  29. Luis F says:

    Who do you replace the 2nd rate refs with while they’re suspended? 3rd rate refs? CONCACAF officials? College refs?

    Refs are bad here, nobody would dispute that. I’m just not sure suspending them improves the situation.

  30. There will always be refereeing problems. The richest league in the world (ie the EPL) can’t figure it out, because it’s a flawed idea. There aren’t enough refs to see everything and the game happens too quickly.

    Video replay is the solution!

  31. DCUPedro says:

    Agreed. A fairer decision might be that along with every yellow card that is changed to a red by the disciplinary committee, $10,000 is donated by MLS to the USSF for referee training.

    Yeah, I know its silly and unrealistic, but it is fair.

  32. Supsam says:

    of course, balance it best. Im just saying the one end of the spectrum with suspensions is alot more appealing than the other spectrum of doing nothing. Some people on here just like criticizing for the sake of criticizing. There’s no pleasing those people and it benefits nothing. Finding balance is the key and im sure MLS will find that balance as this policy is fairly new. Give it time.

  33. Supsam says:

    how on earth is that even fair when the refs arent MLS refs…..they are USSF and CSA refs

  34. Supsam says:

    Tell that to Villar. He’s injured now from a that tackle that you consider “not bad”

  35. go usa says:

    I totally agree that was a dangerous and reckless play deserving suspension!

  36. marco says:

    Just a yellow card offense for a sloppy tackle, with no studs up or retaliation intent. Bad review and suspension by MLS who need to be disciplined for this call.

  37. Kelso says:

    I was watchin this game live. Im not a revolution fan. This was a bad decision.. He was trying to pass and he stepped in front. Unfortunate but why is this a suspension? No respectable league would suspend for this

  38. oscar_in_fw says:

    Sounds like MLS does not have much confidence in their refs if they are “retroactively punishing players”.

    MLS can never be an attractive product if thugs are allowed to hack with intent to injure MLS teams’ most dangerous/skillful players. They should be training their refs to issue cards for any kind of play with significant possibility of injury. A tackle from behind ? automatic card even if the defender actually touches the ball if he has to go through the player to get to the ball. Automatic red card if there’s a scissor tackle from behind, etc.

    The retroactive punishments should be saved for situations where none of the refs were “plausibly ignorant” of the infraction which takes place and also for the more blatant attempts at diving. I’d want refs to review videos of players with a history of diving so they can act accordingly when they see these players diving.

  39. Ben says:

    Mullan tripped Gil after the play had been called dead earlier in the game, and then in the 81st minute he grabbed Gil around the face/neck.

    Moor is probably more deserving than Mullan, though, as he instigated the dust-up in the 81st minute by hitting Gil in the face, again after the play had been called dead.

    I’m not saying that either of them should necessarily be suspended, but if Joseph is suspended for this, and with the two suspensions from last week, I’d put these events in that same class as well. If we’re going to by the letter of the law, then at least Moor should be suspended as well.

  40. heff says:

    It all comes down to the injury. If Villar popped back up after receiving “treatment” the league would have most likely reviewed it and moved on with no additional penalty. But given the leagues recent “campaign” to try and eliminate needless injuries due to hard tackles, it is little surprise to see this action. Joseph’s tackle was clumsy and reckless but not done with malicious intent, I would have left it penalized on the field, but then I don’t work for the league.

  41. Eugene says:

    They basically upgraded the card from a yellow to a red after the game. Based on the tackle, that seems fair.

  42. Dlewis says:

    No he’s serious, and I agree, If the ref makes the call then the league needs to stand by its refs. If its not seen by the refs, then step in and take further action.

  43. Jonathon says:

    I haven’t seen the tripping after the play was called dead, so I can’t comment on that.

    Mullan doesn’t touch Gil’s face / neck during the incident in the 81st minute.

    Gil instigated the incident in the 81st minute with his taunting actions and delaying the restart, not Moor.

    Moor absolutely deserves to be suspended.

  44. sammysounder74 says:

    They’re retroactively punishing SOME players but not others. I can’t help but notice that every player punished this season has been a person of color. This is arbitrary and bunk.

  45. thaDeuce says:

    agreed. make the call on the pitch, unless it is an el salvador style bite or punch to the face. this stuff should be left to the refs.

  46. SoundersSuck says:

    Person of color? As opposed to those persons of no color? Invisible people?
    What color is Adam Moffat?

  47. Frank says:

    Agreed, I personally did not see any intent.

  48. sammysounder74 says:

    It seems to me that the disciplinary committee is behaving in an arbitrary manner and disproportionately punishing people of color. You can google the term if you need help with it.

  49. Mario says:

    Joseph deserves at least 3 games. He is not a talentless hack and as captain he should know better. MLS needs to set a better example or Ferreira, Zakuani, and Morales will happen again…

  50. Mills says:

    He is still out. The punishment should match the injury.

  51. Ed says:

    because he is a worthless hack

  52. angler23 says:

    +3 – Looks to me like as he senses the player coming in he is trying to knock the ball centrally but the ball is long gone by the time he slides in. Unlucky for both players.

  53. RogtheDog says:

    “behaving in an arbitrary manner and disproptionately punishing people of color”?
    A bit contradictory there sammy. If it is arbitrary behavior then they would be punishing more people of “no color??” since there are less “people of color” than people of no color?? in the league.

  54. Chodilicus says:

    I will give you another Amen. I actually do think that Joseph is a dirty player at times but in this case I don’t think it even was a tackle. As you said, he saw the guy coming out of the corner of his eye and tried to pass the ball but the player got there first.

    It ended up being from behind but was not a tackle. When he started the move, nothing but the ball was in front of him.

  55. Seriously? says:

    In the Balotelli case, I read that the ref saw the 2 players come together, but his view was partially blocked, so didn’t see what Balotelli actually did. How people can argue that when a player commits a bad foul, and the ref makes a mistake on the call, then the player should get away with it just baffles me.