[SINCLAIR SUSPENSION] Canadian star Christine Sinclair accepted her four-game ban for her actions critical of Norwegian
referee Christiana Pedersen after the epic USA-Canadian Olympic women's soccer semifinal. But an apology? No way.
"I've said it before -- I don't regret what I said," Sinclair told reporters in a conference call on Monday afternoon. "We had just lost the chance to play for an Olympic gold medal and that's a dream that all of us had."
Sinclair and her teammates and coaches were upset that Pedersen called Canada goalie Erin McLeod for timewasting on a play late in the game that led to the tying U.S. goal.
"We feel like we didn't lose, we feel like it was taken from us," Sinclair said after the game to reporters. "It's a shame in a game like that, that was so important, the ref decided the result before it started."
But the suspension, according to the Canadian Soccer Association (CSA), was not for those comments but other undisclosed comments "made in a public setting" after the game.
Sinclair's four-game suspension will be served in Canada's next four friendlies. It has no official matches until the 2015 Women's World Cup it will host. The Canadian Soccer Association will pay her fine.
"I'd like to acknowledge FIFA's decision and say that it is my intent to accept it," she said. "As a player, I just want to be able to move on as well as allow my team to move on as we prepare for the biggest three years ever in Canadian women's soccer history. Obviously hearing the suspension and the fines, I'm disappointed but I'm ready to move on. Ultimately, if it means me missing a couple games at the start of 2013, it's not the end of the world."
Sinclair admitted she still can't watch replays of the game in which she scored a hat trick to give Canada the lead on three occasions.
"I still can't watch the game against the U.S.," she said. "it's still a touchy subject. It was an emotional time and it got the best of me."