FIFA has nominated Lauren James for best women’s player 2023, despite her largely criticized foul against Super Falcons player, Michelle Alozie.
The 16-player list released by FIFA on Thursday included James who had stepped on Alozie in the knockout stage clash between Nigeria and England.
FIFA said, “A double winner with Chelsea, this exciting forward also emerged as a key player for her national team, providing three goals and as many assists in the Lionesses’ run to the Women’s World Cup final.”
In the 84th minute of the knock-out game against England, James picked up a yellow card for an impetuous stamp on Alozie’s back after both players tussled for the ball.
Referee Melissa Borjas after reviewing the video monitor withdrew the yellow card and showed off a red card.
Although England were down by a player, they held the Falcons to a draw and later won 4-2 on penalties.
She played in the finals based on FIFA judgement.
FIFA had said, “The FIFA Disciplinary Committee has imposed a two-match suspension on England’s player Lauren James following a violation of article 14 of the FIFA Disciplinary Code at the FIFA Women’s World Cup match England vs Nigeria.
“The suspension will be served for the FIFA Women’s World Cup quarter-final and the next international fixture following that.”
The FIFA decision had sparked reactions on social media.
In the group-stage match between Nigeria and Canada, Deborah Abiodun was sent off after she unintentionally tackled Ashley Lawrence and hit her shin.
But FIFA upgraded the 19-year-old’s ban from a one-match ban to a three-match ban.
However, FIFA rule says, “A player will be suspended for at least three matches for violent conduct; at least three matches or an appropriate period of time for assault, including elbowing, punching, kicking, biting, spitting, or hitting an opponent or a person other than a match official.”