Sydney FC to appeal Robert Mak red card following “embarrassing” dive from Newcastle Jets defender

Jamie Dunkin
The Nightly
2 Min Read
Referee Jack Morgan gives Robert Mak of Sydney FC a red card.
Referee Jack Morgan gives Robert Mak of Sydney FC a red card. Credit: Scott Gardiner/Getty Images

Sydney FC will appeal a controversial red card for Róbert Mak, following the winger’s send off against Newcastle Jets on Sunday.

Things went from bad to worse on Sunday for the Sky Blues in the Hunter when at 2-0 down to Newcastle Jets within a half-hour, their Slovakian star saw red following an incident with Jets defender Phillip Cancar.

Following a melee on the touchline over what Sydney captain Luke Brattan said was due to a dispute over changing boots, Jets defender Cancar and Slovakian international Mak went face-to-face before Mak walked off and appeared to wave off Cancar directly behind him, hitting him in the face.

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Cancar then went to ground, clutching his face, as the referee went to give Mak his marching orders, ruling him out of this weekend’s Sydney Derby with Western Sydney Wanderers. Sydney went on to lose 3-1, with in-form Jets striker Apostolos Stamatelopoulos bagging twice alongside former Sky Blue Clayton Taylor.

The footage went viral online, as many called out potential theatrics from the Jets defender, with his own coach Robbie Stanton dismissing the incident as not red card worthy on the post-game coverage. Cancar told the broadcasters post-game there had been contact, but the amount of force applied has been put into question by pundits.

Football journalist Vince Rugari tweeted that Cancar “ought to be embarrassed with himself” over the incident, with many others decrying the potential simulation and lack of sportsmanship from the 22-year-old.

Sydney FC have had five players sent off before half-time this season, with coach Ufuk Talay telling 10 Football he was disappointed in their red cards across the year, but said Mak’s was “one of the weakest” the side had received. The club confirmed to The Nightly it will appeal the red card, filing an obvious error application to the match review panel.

Róbert Mak’s contract is up at the end of the season, with the Slovakian international likely to be selected for his nation at 2024 European Championship in Germany.

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