Guthrie escapes additional ban

Newcastle United midfielder Danny Guthrie will serve a standard three-match suspension for his reckless tackle on Hull City's Craig Fagan, it has been announced.

The 21-year-old was sent off late on during Newcastle's 2-1 Premier League defeat at St James' Park last weekend, after ploughing through the back of Fagan, who was left with a broken left leg after trying to shield the ball in the corner and run down the clock.

Such was the nature of Guthrie's challenge it had been thought he might face extra punishment, but the Football Association said it could not extend the automatic three-game ban which accompanies a red card.

"Every sending off carries an automatic sanction under the current regulations," said a spokesman for the governing body.

"The FA doesn't have the power to extend automatic suspensions. The only circumstances in which we could take any further action would be to issue an additional charge against a player."

However, the FA spokesman said officials were considering introducing a "sliding scale" which would give the governing body more leeway to differentiate between offences.

"We are currently reviewing disciplinary procedures with a view to potential changes for next season and a sliding scale for red-card offences is one of the options under consideration," he said.

Guthrie will miss the Premier League meetings with West Ham United and Blackburn Rovers, as well as a League Cup match against top-flight rivals Tottenham Hotspur.

Guthrie, apologising to Fagan, said: "It was a challenge that came purely out of frustration, but anybody who knows me will accept it was totally out of character on my part."