Chivas USA forward Marcos Mondaini will serve a four-game suspension and pay a $1,500 fine for his foul that left Real Salt Lake star Javier Morales with a dislocated and fractured left ankle and torn ligaments and will sideline him for up to five months. The suspension was less than the 10 games Colorado's Brian Mullan received for his foul that left Seattle's Steve Zakuani with a broken leg.
Why was Mondaini's punishment less than Mullan's? RSL coach Jason Kreis said after the game that the foul from behind outside the penalty area was not the most flagrant foul and added that "I really don't think it was that egregious."
"The disciplinary committee unanimously agreed that Marcos Mondaini's tackle on Javier Morales was reckless and endangered the safety of his opponent, hence the total suspension of four games and total fine of $1,500," Nelson Rodriguez, the MLS executive vice president of competition, technical and game operations, told mlssoccer.com. "The existence of a serious injury alone, however, does not mandate supplemental discipline of a certain level. The circumstances of each play are examined in great detail and discussed at length."
Rodriguez described "Mondaini's tackle as late, clumsy, and from behind. It was also, however, seen as an attempt to prevent his opponent from scoring." By contrast, Rodriguez said the disciplinary committee believed Mullan's tackle on Zakuani "did not serve such a purpose," and that Mullan's tackle "showed utter disregard for his opponent's safety and appeared to be driven by anger."