Refs and racism in focus amid muddle of tactics

Patrice Evra Luis Suarez

It was never going to be a quiet affair. Manchester United at Anfield rarely is and Liverpool’s rejuvenation in recent times ensured a feisty contest from the outset on Saturday lunchtime. Controversial refereeing and post-match accusations of racism simply add to the drama of the occasion, which remains Britain’s biggest and most intensely fought match. Yet, whatever […]

Balotelli ‘lacks respect’ so where’s the FA charge?

Anderson, Mario Ballotelli

Mario Balotelli will face no Football Association action after the Italian striker taunted Manchester United players and supporters on Saturday. Running towards the United section at Wembley, the Manchester City player kissed his badge, gesturing towards United supporters. The Italian’s behaviour provoked an on-pitch mêlée, involving Rio Ferdinand, Anderson, Patrice Evra and City coach David […]

The FA – that’s f*cking what

Wayne Rooney

‘Horrific, deplorable violence is okay, as long as people don’t say any naughty woids’, to paraphrase Sheila Broflovski. It is seemingly the Football Association’s new mantra, after the governing body’s decision to charge Wayne Rooney with using “offensive, insulting and / or abusive language” today. After all, the body did little when Jamie Carragher sliced open […]

Cricket accepts Davies; football wouldn’t

Steven Davies

Steven Davies, the England international cricketer, who chose on Monday to publicly embrace his homosexuality, does so in an environment of mature acceptence. His England teammates reacted to the news from the 23-year-old wicketkeeper, which came out prior to this winter’s Ashes Tour, with a response hoped for but not expected in football. Indeed, football, […]

Government finally acts on ownership in face of inept regulation

Allianz Arena

Supporters’ anger, from Manchester United to Portsmouth, via Liverpool, Southend and Crystal Palace, with club governance has finally translated into a promise for firmer regulation by the government. In the week that United faces Bayern Munich, a club 51 per cent owned by the supporters, action is welcomed better late than never. Under the proposals, […]

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Even FA chief thought Fergie was right

Ian Watmore

Sir Alex Ferguson’s assertion that the Football Association (FA) is inconsistent in disciplinary matters has received backing from on high, according to reports today. FA chief executive Ian Watmore quit amid rumours of personality clashes on the FA’s board. And Watmore has privately backed Ferguson’s claims, according an ESPN report. Ferguson, angered that Manchester United […]

Video: Will Gerrard get banned for this?

Steven Gerrard lashes out at Portsmouth’s Michael Brown during Liverpool’s 4-1 Premier League win last night. The referee failed to spot the incident so the Football Association (FA) can deal with it under their video review regulations. Under the FA’s fast-track procedure Gerrard faces a three match ban, beginning with this weekend’s trip to Old […]

No chance of Ferdinand appeal succeeding

Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand will face a Football Association hearing on Thursday in the knowledge that he will serve at least a three match ban. The player, who has appeared just once for United since 25 October, risks an extended suspension if the FA disciplinary committee decides his appeal his ‘frivolous’. Ferdinand’s decision, made […]

FA charges Ferdinand with violent conduct

The Football Association has charged Rio Ferdinand with violent conduct after the defender’s clash with Hull City’s Craig Fagan at the weekend. Ferdinand, appearing in his first Manchester United match since 25 October, will serve a three match ban, with the FA acting as prosecutor, judge and jury in disciplinary cases. Ferdinand, 30, has appeared […]