The 2023/24 Premier League season has included some rule changes to clamp down on deliberate time-wasting and foul play across the English top flight.
As part of the updated rules, referees will take a zero-tolerance approach towards blatant attempts by players to waste time and disrupt the flow of matches, including the cynical delaying of opposition free-kicks.
This has seen a rise in yellow and reds cards since the start of the campaign, as referees look to invoke the new rules with firmness and increase the amount of added time at the end of games as a result.
Yellow and red cards could rise as a result of the new changes and The Sporting News looks at how Premier League suspension rules work and who has been given the most yellow and red cards this season.
Premier League yellow, red card suspension rules
Standard in-game rules remain the same in Premier League action, with two yellow cards in a match equalling a red, and an immediate player dismissal.
A sending off for two yellow cards will mean an instant one-game Premier League ban, with a straight red card incurring a three-game ban, which can be increased or decreased in certain scenarios where violent conduct is involved.
Suspension rules are also in place for yellow card accumulation throughout a season. Players will be suspended for one game if they receive five yellow cards inside the first 19 games of the season. If 10 yellow cards are picked up before/including the 32nd game of the season, a player will be banned for two further matches.
Players suspended for yellow and red cards in 2023/24
So far nobody has picked up a suspension for yellow card accumulation, but there are some individuals, like Bruno Fernandes of Manchester United and Lucas Paqueta of West Ham who are in danger of triggering such a ban.
There have been eight players suspended for being sent off, with Joe Worrall of Nottingham Forest triggering the only three-match suspension for violent conduct. Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk saw his one-match suspension lengthened by an additional game thanks to his abuse of the official before leaving the pitch.
Premier League 2023/24 yellow and red cards
The Premier League yellow card leader is Anthony Gordon of Newcastle, who has been booked four times already through just five matches.
46 matches into the 2023/24 Premier League season, 220 yellow cards have been shown to players, at an average of 4.78 bookings per match.
So far this season, Newcastle and Tottenham have collected the most bookings with 17 each, while Sheffield United (16) and Brighton (15) are right behind them. Leeds United (2021/22) hold the record for Premier League bookings in one season (96).
The match which featured the most yellow cards so far this season was between Tottenham and Sheffield United on September 16, in which Peter Bankes flashed a massive 11 bookings, including two for Ollie McBurnie who was sent off. That helped Spurs complete to a furious late comeback in a thrilling 2-1 win.
Below are the players who have collected the most yellow cards thus far through the Premier League season.
Data correct as of Saturday, September 16.
Premier League 2023/24 yellow cards
|Bruno Fernandes||Man United||3||5||450|
|Emerson Palmieri||West Ham||3||5||450|
|Lucas Paqueta||West Ham||3||5||443|
|Ola Aina||Nott. Forest||3||3||235|
2 yellow cards: 37 players
1 yellow card: 154 players
Premier League 2023/24 red cards
For Premier League red cards, the type of sending off determines the length of suspension.
A three-match suspension is triggered when sent off for players sent off for violent conduct or dangerous fouls, while a one-match suspension is triggered for being sent off for a second yellow card or a last-man foul.
The FA can also review incidents and tack on additional suspension time as well at its discretion, such as when Virgil van Dijk of Liverpool was handed an additional one-match suspension for referee abuse after picking up a second yellow card.
Data correct as of Saturday, September 16. Includes red cards which were later rescinded upon post-match review.
Under matches suspended, the first number indicates the required matches suspended for the red card shown, plus additional matches in parenthesis for add-on punishments.
|Joe Worrall||Nott. Forest||1||3|
|Virgil van Dijk||Liverpool||1||1 (1)|
|Nayef Aguerd||West Ham||1||1|
|Oliver McBurnie||Sheffield United||1||1|
|Alexis Mac Allister||Liverpool||1||0*|
* Player saw a red card rescinded by league review after the match, leading to the removal of any potential suspension.
Premier League 2023/24 TV channels, live streams
|Hong Kong||—||Now TV|
|India||Star Sports||Disney+, Hotstar,
|Malaysia||Astro SuperSport||Astro Go|
|New Zealand||Sky Sport||Sky Sport Now,
|UK||Sky Sports, TNT Sports||NOW TV, Sky Go,
UK: Matches are carried across Sky Sports and TNT Sports streaming and TV platforms, with select matches on Amazon Prime.
USA: Select matches are televised on USA Network (English) and Telemundo or Universo (Spanish), and all three channels can be streamed on Fubo. The rest of the matches are streamed on NBC platform Peacock for subscribers.
Canada: Every Premier League game this season is live streaming exclusively via Fubo in Canada, with discounts currently at more than 9% for annual plans and more than 20% for quarterly and monthly plans.
Australia: Fans in Australia can stream every match live and on demand on Optus Sport.
India: Star Sports network has the rights to show Premier League matches in India. As well as an English broadcast on Star Sports Select, select matches will be available via regional feeds on Star Sports 3 (in Bengali, English, Kannada, Malayalam), Star Sports 1 (Bangla) and Star Sports 1 (Tamil).