Frustrated Steve Bruce hits out at Sheffield Wednesday star Fernando Forestieri’s ‘ridiculous’ one-match suspension
Unhappy boss Steve Bruce has expressed his disappointment at Fernando Forestieri's one-match suspension, describing the punishment as "not right".
Forestieri will sit-out Wednesday's Championship clash with Swansea City on Saturday following his sending off against Rotherham United.
The mercurcial forward was shown a second yellow card after his over-exuberant celebrations, including an attempted high-five with an Owls fan on the pitch, after Dominic Iorfa's dramatic equaliser in the 10th minute of added on time.
Bruce told The Star: "It's disappointing and it is not right in my opinion. Sometimes a little bit of common sense can go a long way.
"It was nice to see Fernando getting involved in the celebrations. It showed how much it meant to him.
"I find it very, very difficult to accept because they were our supporters. He didn't jump into their supporters."
Speaking after an entertaining South Yorkshire derby at the AESSEAL New York Stadium, Bruce branded referee Darren England's decision to send off Forestieri as "shocking".
"I just find it ridiculous," said Bruce. "He (England) could have sent off two of my staff and four of my subs who all celebrated with our fans.
"But, unfortunately, because Forestieri celebrated on his own with the supporters he is the one who has been punished. It is bizarre.
"You would hope common sense would be enough but unfortunately it was not to be."
As far as Bruce is concerned, the turning point of the contest was England's call to only book Rotherham defender Michael Ihiekwe after his strong, mistimed challenge on Forestieri just after the hour mark.
Bruce said: "I don’t want anybody to be sent off but if that’s not a red card on Forestieri on the half way line then I don’t know what is.
"It was the most shocking, shocking foul I’ve seen in years. It was a horrendous challenge on Forestieri."
Despite coming in for some rough treatment against Rotherham, Forestieri showed glimpses of his quality. He notched his fourth goal of the season after great work by Adam Reach on the right wing in the first half.
"I was delighted with Fernando," said Bruce. "There were some strong tackles on him but Fernando is a tough so and so.
"I think he has come to expect that throughout his career. I had it to a certain degree at Aston Villa with Jack Grealish where he was the most fouled player in the Championship.
"Fernando always wants to commit the defender and draw that tackle. He is a dribbler and likes to take the ball in tight areas. He wants to beat you and is clever with the ball.”