Chelsea appeal 'harsh' bans
Chelsea have hit out at the 'unnecessarily harsh' punishments handed out by Uefa to Didier Drogba and Jose Bosingwa. European football's governing body imposed sanctions on the Blues duo and fined the club in the wake of their controversial UEFA Champions League semi-final defeat at the hands of Barcelona. Uefa revealed last Monday that the Stamford Bridge club were appealing against the sanctions and Chelsea have now confirmed their intention to fight the punishments. Striker Drogba was handed a six-game European ban following his ugly confrontation with referee Tom Henning Ovrebo after the final whistle at Stamford Bridge, with the final two matches deferred for two years. Team-mate Bosingwa was issued a four-game ban, with the final match deferred, after comments about Ovrebo in a post-match interview, which he later retracted. Chelsea were fined €100,000 (£85,000) for improper conduct of their players and the throwing of missiles by their supporters. The Blues were infuriated by the referee's performance in the second leg of their semi-final showdown with eventual winners Barca, as they saw four fervent penalty appeals rejected. The Spanish giants booked their place in the Rome final on away goals courtesy of a last-gasp strike from Andres Iniesta and went on to lift the trophy with a 2-0 success over Manchester United. A statement on Chelsea's official website read: "Chelsea Football Club can confirm it has today lodged an appeal against the Uefa bans given to Didier Drogba and Jose Bosingwa, and the fine imposed against the club. "We believe these punishments are unnecessarily harsh given the circumstances. "We would reiterate that the players and the club are acutely aware of our responsibilities towards setting a good example as role models and upholding the values of the game. "That is why honest and sincere apologies were made swiftly after these regrettable incidents occurred."
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