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Rafa Marquez Suspension: Red Bulls Defender Suspended By MLS For Three Games

New York Red Bulls defender Rafael Marquez was suspended on Thursday by MLS' disciplinary committee for three games following his actions against Shea Salinas of the San Jose Earthquakes in last week's match.

Here's how the league characterized Marquez's actions:

tackled, fell on and kicked his opponent in the 42nd minute of the April 14 match against the San Jose Earthquakes and his actions were viewed as violent conduct that demonstrated blatant disregard for the safety of his opponent.

See the video of the incident, which resulted in Salinas having his collarbone broken, below:

Marquez will begin to serve his suspension immediately and will miss New York's matches against D.C. United (Apr. 22), New England Revolution (April 28) and LA Galaxy (May 5). Marquez was also fined an undisclosed amount of money.

The Mexican international was only recently returning from a three-game suspension he received at the end of last season. Marquez had picked up the match ball in a playoff match against the Galaxy and tossed it at Landon Donovan which caused a scuffle at midfield.

The timing could not be worse for the Red Bulls and Marquez. The brand has been promoting the team in the New York area recently with 300,00 cans of Red Bull with the image of striker Thierry Henry on them. The expansion of this promotion to Western states is set to begin in May (when Marquez will just be coming off his second suspension in six months). Marquez's image is to appear on 1.3 million cans in those states (via Wall Street Journal).

After showing uneven effort for New York after playing well for Mexico, Marquez ripped teammates for their play last season during a slump. This was supposed to be a redemption year for Marquez. The Red Bulls were clearly going to allow him to be a face of the club with the Red Bull cans and events such as lighting the Empire State Building with Red Bulls colors.

Instead of redemption, he has found himself in trouble with the league once again, something which has happened far too often since he was signed in 2010.

For more coverage of the Red Bulls, visit our team page, or our blog Once A Metro.