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I don't want Simon to change ways: Arnie

AAP logoAAP 15/12/2016 Emma Kemp

Sydney FC coach Graham Arnold doesn't want Matt Simon to rein in his "passionate" playing style despite it earning the veteran striker a suspension for Saturday's A-League match in Perth.

Simon copped a one-match ban for ramming into Melbourne City defender Michael Jakobsen after coming off the bench during last weekend's ill-tempered draw.

But Arnold defended his regular substitute as a hard worker whose ferocity can swing games in the undefeated Sky Blues' favour.

"To be honest I was surprised initially that he got cited," Arnold said.

"But they're things you can't deal with, the match review panel does what it has to do.

"Matty has apologised to the group, but he'll never change his ways - I don't want him to.

"He's a fantastic team player who shows a lot of passion.

"I know every opponent's defenders hate playing against him and he knows that as well.

"When he came on last week and we had 10 men, he kept the whole back line busy on his own and really took the pressure off us.

"He did the work of two or three people to get us the result."

Arnold said he'd had a word with Simon about the incident and insisted Sydney don't condone rough or illegal play.

"We're proud of the fact the club plays the game the right way," he said.

"I've spoken to Matty about it, and it was just passion and emotion, and frustration with how the game was going."

Simon will be available for the Sky Blues' Boxing Day clash in Adelaide.

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