Birchall, Cháves suspended in Galaxy-Fire aftermath

Chris Birchall

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NEW YORK — Major League Soccer’s Disciplinary committee on Wednesday handed down two suspensions stemming from a physical game between the LA Galaxy and Chicago Fire over the weekend.

Galaxy defender Chris Birchall was given a two-game suspension for his reckless tackle in the 93rd minute on Fire winger Patrick Nyarko, which drew a yellow card and led to pushing and shoving near the team benches after the incident. Birchall also faces a $500 fine for the incident, which the Disciplinary Committee said “showed utter disregard for his opponent’s safety.”

Birchall clipped Nyarko with his right leg while the speedy Fire midfielder streaked up the sideline, sending Nyarko head over heels before a number of Fire players tried to confront Birchall for the tackle late in LA’s 2-1 win. Chicago’s Josip Mikulic was issued a red card during the fracas.

Birchall will serve his suspension July 20 when the Galaxy host the Columbus Crew and July 30 at the Vancouver Whitecaps FC.

The committee also handed down a one-game suspension and a $250 fine to Fire striker Diego Cháves for his reckless tackle on Landon Donovan in the 91st minute. He will serve his suspension against the Portland Timbers on Saturday. Cháves "endangered the safety of his opponent," according to the league's ruling.

The Disciplinary Committee also fined San Jose Earthquakes head coach Frank Yallop $500 for conduct unbecoming of a professional during the game against Philadelphia Union on Saturday. This fine is added to his automatic one-game suspension and $500 fine for being dismissed from the sideline by the referee.

Yallop’s total fine is $1,000; he will not be permitted to be on the sideline or in communication with the bench during the Earthquakes game against the Columbus Crew on July 16.