Manchester City manager Mark Hughes has hit out at the Football Association over their decision to charge Shaun Wright-Phillips with violent conduct.
City have until 6pm on Thursday evening to decide whether to appeal against the action, which will result in a three-match ban if Wright-Phillips is found guilty. Hughes is unhappy at the severity of the charge, which he feels is disproportionate to Wright-Phillips' retaliation for Rory Delap's initial challenge during the defeat at Stoke last Saturday.
"We are disappointed," said Hughes. "There are a few letters and faxes going to be exchanged between ourselves and the FA because the way it stands, if we decide to appeal, we are not going to get a verdict until late on Friday."
The Welshman also feels the FA could have acted more speedily rather than let the England winger train for most of the week believing he was going to play against Middlesbrough on Saturday.
He added: "The process could have been done a lot more quickly, which is something we will be highlighting because I have to prepare a team for Saturday."
Delap was dismissed at the Britannia Stadium when he took two swipes at Wright-Phillips.
Referee Martin Atkinson has now said he would have shown the City man a red card too if he had seen his petulant response.
Hughes accepts Wright-Phillips made a mistake but feels the retaliation was nowhere near as serious as Delap's initial tackle.
"By the letter of the law, Shaun retaliated," said Hughes. "But he had twice been kicked from behind. I don't think what Shaun did in response was violent conduct.
"It was a human reaction and I feel a three-game ban would be unfair."
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