Lauren James handed ban for World Cup red card

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Lauren James has been given a two-game suspension by Fifa for her red card offense during England’s last-16 victory over Nigeria. As a result, she will miss both the quarter-final against Colombia and potentially the World Cup semi-final if England progresses. James was shown a red card after stepping on Nigeria defender Michelle Alozie during the knockout match, which England ultimately won in a penalty shootout.

Initially, there were concerns that James might be banned for the entire tournament, as Fifa typically extends suspensions for cases involving “violent conduct” to three games. However, the governing body’s disciplinary committee showed some leniency in this instance. If England reaches the World Cup final on Sunday, August 20th in Sydney, James could potentially return to the lineup.

James publicly apologized for her actions, addressing a tweet to Alozie. She expressed her remorse and promised to learn from the experience. James is now the fourth England player to be sent off in a World Cup knockout match, joining the ranks of David Beckham, Wayne Rooney, and current Lionesses captain Millie Bright.

England’s manager, Sarina Wiegman, acknowledged that James had let her emotions get the better of her in a moment of indiscretion. There is a possibility that this incident could result in the 21-year-old missing the remainder of the World Cup due to suspension. Alozie had tweeted earlier in defense of James, recognizing the passion and intense emotions that come with playing at such a high level. She expressed her respect for James despite the incident.

Teammate Beth England spoke of the support the players have given James ahead of the upcoming quarter-final. She emphasized that it was a split-second, emotional moment and that the team has rallied around James. England also praised James for her acknowledgement of the mistake and the public apology she issued. Moving forward, the team is focused on putting the incident behind them and continuing with their campaign in the tournament.

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