Hearts to seek rule change over Malaury Martin yellow card

Hearts' Malaury Martin (left) is shown a yellow card from Andrew Dallas
Malaury Martin (left) had not tripped Motherwell's Louis Moult

Hearts will seek a change in the rules after being told Malaury Martin's yellow card cannot be rescinded despite a blatant case of mistaken identity.

The midfielder was blamed by referee Andrew Dallas for a trip on Louis Moult when it was caused by another Motherwell player - Lionel Ainsworth.

But Hearts have been told cases of mistaken identity have to involve team-mates and not rival players.

"The club is going to pursue a potential rule change," said Hearts.

The Scottish Premiership club said in a website statement that they would seek the change "at the earliest opportunity so that common sense can prevail in the future and no other player or club suffers a similar fate".

Hearts had stated their intention to appeal to the Scottish FA against the booking for Martin after 43 minutes of the 3-0 win over Motherwell on Saturday.

"Following discussions with the club's legal advisors and various officials at the SFA, it is clear, however, that the current rules as they stand do not cover this specific situation," said the Edinburgh club.

Yellow cards can only be overturned in Scotland on two grounds - "simulation" and "mistaken identity".

"Put quite simply, we cannot appeal on the grounds of 'mistaken identity' as the referee did not mistakenly identify our player. He believed the offence was committed by Malaury," added Hearts.

"The fact that it was not a foul and that the Motherwell player merely tripped over the feet of his own player, means that, while it may have been an error to give the foul and to book our player, it was not a case of mistaken identity.

"The referee did not mistake Malaury for another Hearts player, which is the only situation that would allow an appeal to be successful in the case of 'mistaken identity'.

"Nor can the yellow be rescinded by referee Dallas as the rules do not allow for this."

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