Update: 5:20p BST / 12:20p EST
Everton have released a brief statement in the wake of the FA’s dismissal of the Blues appeal against the Niasse ban.
"Although we are disappointed by the decision of the Independent Regulatory Commission to reject Oumar’s denial of the charge, the Club and the player accept the outcome of today’s hearing.
"We will make further comment when we have fully reviewed the observations contained in the report."
Everton’s worst fears regarding the Oumar Niasse “diving” situation have been confirmed. The Football Association have rejected the club’s appeal, and officially banned Niasse from participating in the Blues’ upcoming matches against Southampton and West Ham United.
BREAKING: Oumar Niasse has been banned for two games for simulation after @FA reject @Everton's appeal #ssn pic.twitter.com/2QSEQguN7Z— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) November 22, 2017
It’s a ludicrous decision from the governing body, for a litany of reasons, all of which we have covered in depth the past few days.
There is contact on the play from Scott Dann to begin with, and Niasse’s alleged simulation was in no way worse than previous actual flops from the likes of Raheem Sterling, Bernardo Silva, and Richarlison.
The FA has set a dangerous precedent. If a hard-working, honest player like Niasse can be retrospectively banned after an inquest from his opponent and the media, how far will this go? Can anyone complain after a match and get their rival suspended?
For his part, caretaker manager David Unsworth disagrees with the charges, and stated as much during his pre-match press conference this morning.
He (Niasse) was shocked and I was shocked (to be charged). He doesn’t tell lies and he wouldn’t go down without reason. He wants to score goals. Contact or slight contact, it doesn’t matter. We’re all bitterly disappointed.
We will have to accept the outcome.
I think it's a great rule but I don't think it changes my stance. Contact is contact and my view won't change on that. Anywhere on the pitch it’s a foul.
We can hope that the FA alters their practices, but for now it seems the matter of Oumar Niasse and The Phantom Dive is closed. It’s unfortunate, but if there’s a bright side, the next two matches represent a significant opportunity for Dominic Calvert-Lewin and Sandro Ramirez. The Spaniard looked lively on Saturday against Crystal Palace and will surely be looking to take his chance.