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World Cup news

FIFA relaxes suspension rules

June 20, 2010
By Soccernet staff

FIFA has changed its rules on suspensions to help avoid big-name absentees for the World Cup final.

Paul Gascoigne
GettyImagesEngland's Paul Gascoigne famously cried after a booking ruled him out of the 1990 final

Players currently receive a one-match ban as a result of picking up yellow cards in separate games, and that has seen the likes of Germany's Michael Ballack miss out on a place in the final.

As a result, FIFA has now said players taking part in the semi-finals will only be at risk of suspension for the final if they are sent off.

"Fifa simply said we want to give the best players a chance to play in the final," spokesman Marius Schneider said. "The discussion first came up when Ballack was ruled out [for the 2002 final]."