West Bromwich Albion have reversed a decision to appeal against the sendingoff of Paul Robinson, who was shown the red card in the Carling Cup-tie at Fulham on Tuesday night.
Robinson was dismissed by Andy D'Urso for violent conduct in the final minute of their 3-2 extra-time victory at Craven Cottage.
Albion had originally beaten the noon deadline yesterday to lodge their appeal but now, having reconsidered their position, have reluctantly decided to accept the decision.
Manager Bryan Robson was incensed at the decision but did not believe the red card will be overturned.
"We feel a real sense of injustice over this matter, because Paul was the player who was sinned against," Robson said. "It's absolutely ridiculous that we have to lose him for three games and that we cannot appeal because of the wording of the law."
Dr John Evans, the Albion secretary, said: "We understand Paul Robinson's position over this particular incident, but having reviewed the evidence relating to the case we feel that any such appeal would not succeed."
Robinson, who has been Albion's best outfield performer this season, will miss Albion's next three Premier League fixtures, against Newcastle United, West Ham United and Everton.
Darren Carter also faces a race against time to be fit for the match against Newcastle on Sunday. The combative midfield player looked assured on his second consecutive start at Fulham, but was left nursing a sore knee after a meaty challenge with Dean Leacock.
It is unclear whether he will be fit for Sunday as yet, but there is more optimism over the fitness levels of Nwankwo Kanu and Diomansy Kamara, who were both withdrawn on Tuesday evening.
Kanu, who scored his second goal in three games, has been struggling with a hamstring injury for the past month and admitted it was a precautionary measure to substitute him at Fulham.
"My hamstring was tight long before I scored," Kanu said. "But with two minutes to go I thought the game was won, so I thought I was better stopping than making it any worse.
"However, it was an important win for us as it proves that we have guts after the Bolton game and we believe in ourselves. If we have confidence then I believe we can match anyone and the win at Fulham was important as it showed that our heads aren't down."
All three goalscorers on Tuesday evening have given Robson food for thought regarding his team selection against Newcastle. Kanu, Rob Earnshaw and particularly Junichi Inamoto all produced impressive performances.
"We need to carry this on against Newcastle and it is good that there is competition for places, as this healthy for the team," said Kanu. "Everyone wants to play and you have to take your chance when it comes. It is good for the gaffer, as he knows that everyone wants to play."
It was Inamoto who stood out like a beacon in Albion's midfield, though, as it has been a problematic area for Robson this term.
The Japan international was sent home with a bundle of videos under his arm dissecting his performances and pointing him in the direction that Robson wanted him to go.
And Robson was delighted that Inamoto responded to his early-season criticism. " Inamoto was outstanding against Fulham," Robson said. "He passed the ball well, worked really hard and scored a cracking goal, so I am pleased with him.
"We spoke about lapses in concentration and things he needed to put right in has game and it is that he has taken things on board, as you have to be very alert to stay with either Papa Bouba Diop or Sylvain Legwinski and I thought he was very good at that.
"It was his best game since I have been at the club. I can understand his concerns at not playing regularly because the World Cup is this summer and he needs to impress his manager. However, on that performance against Fulham he is definitely good enough to go."
Fulham's assistant manager Steve Kean concurred with Robson's view after witnessing Inamoto's world-class goal on Tuesday evening. Inamoto spent two years at Craven Cottage before moving to The Hawthorns in 2004 and Kean is well aware of the capabilities of the gifted playmaker.
"It was a special goal from Inamoto and we know that he is capable of producing things like that," Kean said.