Aleksandar Mitrovic says he still can’t believe what has happened.
The Newcastle striker is banned from club football until October but retains the belief that the incident with Lanzini ‘wasn’t even a foul’.
Mitrovic thinks that in every match there are ’10 clashes like that with a defender’.
None of know what is going on in his head but when you saw the TV pictures, the big thing was that he appears to suddenly change direction to ensure he makes contact with the West Ham player.
It looked very intentional, even if the Serbian forward didn’t mean any harm.
He pleaded guilty and didn’t challenge the three match ban, no doubt advised by NUFC that if he/they had done so, there was every chance he could get an extra game added to his suspension for making a frivolous appeal.
After helping to put his country on the brink of World Cup qualification with a win against the Republic of Ireland, Mitrovic now has only one club game at home to Liverpool before he and his international teammates have the opportunity to finish that job off.
During his suspension, Mitro turns 23 and has to now concentrate his energies on making a go of his club career and show his desire on the pitch to score goals and help the team, rather than being a liability at times.
Maybe this will be the season when everything finally clicks..
“It is very frustrating for me but I can’t change anything now.
“These are the rules, but I didn’t mean to do this, the things they have accused me of. It wasn’t even a foul in the game but I have to accept the rules and respect the decision that has been made.
“I didn’t mean it, it wasn’t even a foul, I have three or four incidents like this every match so I don’t understand it, I was really surprised.
“It has been really tough to get my head around. It was an accident. I spoke to Lanzini after the game and he was fine.
“You maybe get 10 clashes like that with a defender in a game. It was not even a foul, it was not even a yellow card, but I have to accept my punishment. If I say something more they can punish me even more.
“I haven’t spoken to Rafa (about the incident) yet but I will do. I’m not sure what he can say.
“I’ve been banned for three games and I was really surprised.
“It is going to be very hard to miss these games, I had a good pre-season, I’ve scored two goals already, it is very hard for my head to stay focused and strong.
“But that’s life. That’s football, I just have to try and stay fit and sharp so that I can help the team when I return.”