Milton Keynes Dons striker Izale McLeod will serve a five-match ban after an appeal against his red card at Hartlepool was rejected.
The 22-year-old was sent off for violent conduct in the League Two match at Victoria Park after an aerial challenge with Michael Nelson.
Martin Allen quickly defended McLeod over the incident, insisting the challenge was not worthy of a straight red card.
"Izale was using his arms but it was never a straight red," Allen said after the game. "It was two players going for a 50-50 ball."
The Dons decided to lodge an appeal to The Football Association over the red card, but have seen it rejected.
McLeod has been handed such a hefty suspension as he has been sent off three times this season.
The club's top scorer will now not be available for selection until February 20, when Allen's side face Mansfield.