Robbie Keane, the Tottenham Hotspur captain, has had his appeal against Sunday's sending off against Birmingham City rejected by the Football Association.

Keane was shown a straight red card by the referee, Phil Dowd, for a studs-first lunge on Fabrice Muamba, the Birmingham midfielder.

Tottenham had been confident they would win the appeal after video replays showed that the decision had been a harsh one by Dowd, who appeared to seek clarification from the fourth official.

Keane, who scored both Tottenham goals in the 3-2 home defeat, will now miss three games: next Sunday's Premier League game against Manchester City at White Hart Lane, the league game at Portsmouth the following Saturday and the Carling Cup quarter-final tie at Manchester City three days later