Vancouver Whitecaps winger Kekuta Manneh has been suspended one game for a collision with New England Revolution goalkeeper Bobby Shuttleworth.
Vancouver coach Martin Rennie revealed the suspension after a practice Tuesday. The Whitecaps will not appeal the suspension, and Manneh will sit out Wednesday’s home game against Chivas USA.
“The (MLS) disciplinary committee decided that, when he bumped with Shuttleworth. it was reckless, I think, and they’ve decided to suspend him for (Wednesday’s) game,” said Rennie.
Manneh, an 18-year-old rookie from Gambia, appeared to clip Shuttleworth in the head with his foot as he jumped over the goalkeeper while he slid to grab the ball in Saturday’s game at B.C. Place Stadium. The Whitecap received a yellow card for a foul on the play.
Rennie believes the league punished Manneh because it is trying to ensure that players avoid injuries, and the team has no complaints about the decision. Shuttleworth was able to finish the game, and did not show any adverse effects of the collision while speaking to reporters afterward.
“I think (Manneh) was trying to be careful,” said Rennie. “I don’t think it was malicious. But we respect that decision. We accept it, and (Manneh) will be able to work extra-hard for a few days and get back in our squad for the next game.”
Manneh, drafted fourth overall by the Whitecaps in the 2013 MLS SuperDraft, has played sparingly this season as Rennie attempts to introduce him to the pro ranks slowly. The rookie has one goal and an assist in nine games, including one start in the season opener against Toronto.