Arsenal striker Giroud banned for three matches

The Frenchman will miss the visit of newly crowned champions Manchester United, before games against QPR and Wigan after an appeal against his recent red card was rejected
Arsenal striker Olivier Giroud has been banned for three matches after an Independent Regulatory Commission rejected his appeal following a red card against Fulham.

Giroud was dismissed for serious foul play during Saturday's narrow 1-0 win and will now miss the visit of newly crowned champions Manchester United on Sunday, along with the trip to QPR and Wigan's arrival on May 14.

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The French striker caught the ankle of Fulham's Stanislav Manolev when stretching for the ball and referee Andre Marriner, who had already sent off Steve Sidwell earlier in the game, branished another red card.

The news leaves the Gunners without a recognised centre-forward until the away game against Newcastle on May 19, with Theo Walcott, Lukas Podolski and Gervinho all switching between playing out wide and a central focus.

Arsenal currently lie third in the Premier League table as they bid to qualify for the Champions League for the 16th successive season, but both Chelsea and Tottenham move above the Gunners if they win their game in hand.