USA national team boss Juergen Klinsmann does not agree with the two-game ban handed to Clint Dempsey last week.
The Seattle Sounders star missed the weekend's 2-0 win over the Montreal Impact after MLS banned him for two matches for striking Toronto FC's Mark Bloom in the midsection during last weekend's 2-1 defeat at CenturyLink Field.
Dempsey maintains that he was only trying to slap Bloom's hand away but nevertheless, the suspension was imposed, and he will also have to sit out the March 29 home fixture against Columbus Crew.
That will see Dempsey out of action leading up to the USA's friendly with Mexico on April 3 prompting criticism from Klinsmann who feels the former Fulham and Tottenham star is harshly dealt with by opposing defenders and match officials alike.
"It's very disappointing to see Clint be the only person punished from this game," Klinsmann said.
"There is a foul against him in the sixth minute that should have been a red card. The persistent fouling continued throughout the game, and he's getting punished for a reaction following all those fouls.
"Yes, [Dempsey] made a mistake. But if opponents don't get penalized for consistently fouling, it only encourages them to continue that approach.
"It comes at a very bad time for us as it throws him out of a rhythm before the game against Mexico. A two-game suspension for that moment seems very harsh."
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