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Man U v Real Mad. What really happened?

OH, WHAT A BAD KNIGHT! – by Mal Davies

This article concerns the match on  Tuesday 5th March 2013 : Manchester United v Real Madrid (1-2, aggregate 2-3) in the champions league.

I’m publishing it because although the match was a little while ago, the central point in this post is incredibly important.  It reveals either a complete lack of knowledge of the rules of football by Sir A F or extreme duplicity and pretty much gross incompetence by the same man.  Tony

——————

Referee: Cuneyt Cakir; ARs:  Bahattin Duran & Tarik Ongun; 4th official: Mustafa Eyisoy; AARs: Huseyin Gosek & Mete Kalkavan. All officials from Turkey .

The 2nd leg of the UEFA Champions League game, ManUtd v Real Madrid, had a big talking point after the 56th minute dismissal of Nani (ManUtd) for Serious Foul Play, namely, endangering the safety of an opponent, Alvaro Arbeloa.

It was a bad night for ManUtd who led 1-0 through a 48th minute own goal by Sergio Ramos, and a bad night for their manager, Sir Alex Ferguson, who was too ‘distraught’ after the game to appear at the press conference.

Sadly the media portrayed the decision by the referee to dismiss Nani as shocking. The argument was that Nani was attempting to control the high ball, coming over his shoulder, with his foot, and did not intentionally make contact with Arbeloa.

‘Intent’ was taken out of the Laws in 1995 by the International FA Board, our law makers – England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and FIFA make up the IFAB. With ‘intent’, referees were being asked to read the player’s mind. Did he intend doing that? But now, referees are no longer required to do this.

Referees will now look at the outcome in an incident. Briefly, if, for example, a player is on the ground, the referee now has to forget intent. The player has got there because his opponent has been at least careless (no card), reckless (yellow card) or used excessive force (red card). Referees are also asked to bear in mind that a tackle that endangers the safety of an opponent must be sanctioned as Serious Foul Play, a red card offence.

The game is football : using the foot to play the ball; in fact, using any part of the body except the hand or arm. Heading the ball is also allowed. Guidelines for referees when considering ‘endangering the safety of an opponent’ in the Nani incident is, more or less, players are allowed to use their feet up to about waist high. Above that, the player can head the ball but if he uses his foot, he should make sure there is no player in the immediate vicinity whose safety will be endangered (red card).

Some people argued that Nani’s action was Dangerous Play. Dangerous Play is now an indirect free kick if it involves no physical contact between the players. If there is physical contact, the action is no longer Dangerous Play but becomes an offence punishable with a direct free kick or penalty kick. So Nani was not guilty of Dangerous Play under the new interpretation.

A scissors kick is permissible provided that, in the opinion of the referee, it is not dangerous to an opponent.

In Nani’s case the ball was above waist high. He should have been intercepting the ball with his head or chest or not playing the ball at all. It was up to him to make sure that, if he decided to use his foot at that height, his foot would not make contact with an opponent.

Nani’s foot was up. His leg was straight. He made contact straight into Alvaro’s chest. He could have fractured a couple of ribs. He did not but he could have. Nani, some people argued, did not intentionally aim to injure Alvaro, but intent no longer enters the equation. The outcome saw both players on the ground as a result of Nani’s lack of consideration for the safety of Alvaro. It was a clear red card for Serious Foul Play by endangering the safety of an opponent.

In many employments, the employee would be cautioned (yellow card) or sacked (red card) if he broke company rules. And so it is in the best interest of the employee to be aware of those rules. But football is an employment which has employees working without knowing what their boss (the IFAB) regards as misconduct, not fully knowing what they can be yellow or red carded for. It seemed that, in Nani’s case, the manager and his players were not aware that such an offence warranted a red card. And most in the UK media, sorry to say, were also unaware.

FIFA and UEFA have seminars where their officials are shown DVDs of incidents (fouls) and the interpretation that the Laws require them to make. If there is a referee who does not carry out the application of the Laws correctly then he might not be asked to referee many games or he could be demoted, and in certain circumstances possibly removed. He cannot referee a game using his own interpretations as Laws need to be uniformly applied worldwide.

Referees cannot use common sense. They used to. But then the media complained about the referees not being uniform in their decisions.

Now, not only are the Laws in a booklet, but also the Interpretations & Guidelines appear in the present day ‘Laws of the Game’ booklet. There should be no excuse for anyone misinterpreting a Law.

“The world will be watching” said Jose Mourinho, Real’s manager, before the game. So what an opportunity for the world to learn the Laws and its new interpretations.  Well, not that new as they have been around for a few years. The media owe it to fans to put over the correct interpretation of any Law especially if a Law has been amended or updated.  But the media let everyone down.

The UEFA Referee’s Observer at the match was Pierluigi Collina who backed the referee’s decision and marked him 8.2 out of 10. He would have got more, Collina said, if he had not ignored Rio Ferdinand’s clapping in his face after the final whistle. UEFA had ‘no issues’ with the red card.

Coaches must instil into their players they are not to injure or endanger the safety of opponents who are fellow professionals. Not being aware of the interpretation together with, what a number have said, the tactics chosen by Sir Alex, cost ManUtd the game. It was not the referee’s fault. He officiated in the manner his bosses required and was given a high mark.

Once a team is reduced to ten men, any manager should then have a different strategy. Mourinho, realising his team were now playing against ten men, brought on Luka Modric to replace Arbeloa. Seven minutes later, in oceans of space, Modric was allowed to shoot for goal and score from 25 yds, 1-1. Two minutes later, a goal kick started a 21-pass move between Real players without any ManUtd player touching the ball, and ending with a goal by Ronaldo, 1-2 and aggregate score 2-3.

ManUtd did not score themselves. Their goal was a 48th minute own goal by Sergio Ramos. So they went 90 mins without scoring. With 10-men including Rooney, left out of the starting line-up, now on for Welbeck, ManUtd had good chances to score but failed.

Real’s manager reorganised his team to meet the 10 v 11 situation. He quickly seized the opportunity while his opposite number was still thinking about the decision to award a red card to one of his players at Old Trafford.

Sir Alex saw his team fail to score in the first half, score through an own goal, and then receive a red card for one of his players. He did not seem to have an immediate strategy for his players, now reduced to playing 10 v 11. They saw their manager descending the steps, wagging a finger at the referee, confronting the 4th official, and then looking for more support from the crowd!

Outcome? Real quickly scored two away goals, and Sir Alex was too ‘distraught’ to answer questions after the game.

Players reflect their managers. They saw their manager confronting the referee, wagging his finger. It was disappointing to see some of the ManUtd players after the game likewise confronting the referee.

A bad night for ManUtd and for Sir Alex.

Recent posts…

The books…

The sites from the same team…

 

50 comments to Man U v Real Mad. What really happened?

  • richard morgan

    Mal a well written piece, however as you are aware there have been plenty of other tackles in european games over last few seasons and they have only ever received yellow even ones where players got kicked in head. I am an arsenal fan and don’t care if utd went through or not but that decision made a huge significance on the outcome of the match. It was a definite yellow and probably that all but its irrelevant now.

  • Rupe

    But Richard, what makes you say that THIS foul should only have been a yellow card offence, rather than that (at least some of) those other fouls you mention should have been red cards?

    That’s what the laws of the game say.

  • Tirwakunda Devis

    We have various incidences of that nature being worth red card.Honestly,the red card was obvious.Imagine the did not issue any card,what do you think would have happened?I think we should not this situation in our perspective but the laws of football.

  • David

    Take your Gooner glasses off mate! I appreciate your comments but it was a very, very harsh decision, a yellow at worst, and it completely changed the game. If the sending off had been applied to an Arsenal player against Bayern I am sure we would have been reading a totally different piece! Your nonsense about Utd not scoring because it was an own goal – is just that nonsense.

  • Tirwakunda Devis

    We have seen various incidences of that nature being worth red card.Honestly,the red card was obvious.Imagine the referee did not issue any card,what do you think would have happened?I think we should not interpret this situation in our perspective but the laws of football.

  • Adam

    If its a red card in Collina’s mind, thats good enough for me(The Hills have eyes). We always have an observer in the crowd so it wouldn’t be a huge step to introduce the technology to help the ref with the observer overseeing this.

    Excellent article Mal Davies. Are you one of the ref reviewers?

  • John

    Mal. As a united fan I agree with some of the points you made here. I personally felt the decision to send Nani off was harsh but not terrible and you are right to point out that united didnt cope as well as they should have after going down to 10 men. However, the main point of your article is focused on the law change wrt intent and endangering an opponent. I can see that you have researched this and you are well informed as regards to interpretation of the law. So I have a question for you. If Nani was rightly sent off for his challenge, even though it was unintentional, should not Lopez, the Madrid keeper, have seen red for punching Vidic in the face in the 1st half? His intention was to punch the ball obviously, in the same way that Nani’s intention was to control a ball coming over his shoulder. Lopez completely missed the ball and punched Vidic in the face. Is this not also an act that endangered an opponent?

  • Sunust

    @richard Morgan. How can you continue to argue that it was ‘definitely’ a yellow card after reading every piece of evidence based on the rules and laws of the game from this post that explain why it was correct? Because you would like to believe the rules of the game today aren’t this way, or wish they weren’t? Or is it because you can think of examples where referees have made poor decisions to ignore the rules, which Mal’s just explained so thoroughly, on worse tackles in other games? Its just like the author says, at any other job you are expected to follow the rules and code of conduct of your workplace and if you don’t then you risk being demoted or sacked. It seems to me that this piece explained, beyond doubt, that the referee followed the rules of the game as they are currently written, and he was validated in this further by his peers and superiors also agreeing on the correctness of the red card decision. If you believe a tackle like Nani’s should not be deemed a red card offence, it should be the rules of the game that you argue need to be changed, because right now it absolutely was the correct decision, no matter whether other referees in different games have made incorrect decision to not punish tackles even worse than this one. However, you can’t just give an opinion based argument that says you know this decision should have been a yellow and then not support it with tangible evidence for why that is.

  • robl

    I don’t think United fans would have been so incensed if the PGMOL applied these rules regularly at home, or UEFA applied all of the other rules consistantly. Last night Spuds were racially abused an the ref did nothing, and don’t get me started on shirt pulling.
    In addition, a week later the Rosicky challenge went unpunished – so one week it’s a red card, the next it isn’t. No wonder we’re all miffed.
    Incidently what did our ref score?

  • Tasos

    Good article.

    Agree. Alex Ferguson failed to react to the sending-off even though at the time his team still held the advantage in the tie. It was only after his team had conceded the two goals and gone behind in the tie that Ferguson made any substitutions but the bird had flown by then.

    Poor management although in his defence I can only surmise that Alex Ferguson doesn’t get debatable decisions going against his side very often and thus became too caught up in the furore rather than keeping a clear head.

    BTW Mr Davies you do realise you are now “banned” from any Man Utd press conference until you apologise for this article.

  • gouresh

    Interesting read. Thanks

  • WalterBroeckx

    For all claiming that we are utd haters and other rubbish let me state that this article is from a mail that has been written by the author of this article.
    Mr. Davies has no connections to Untold Arsenal, to Arsenal or to us.
    One of our readers who is a former ref has received this mail and has send it to Untold to get it published.

    For those who didn’t get this the first time around: Mr. Davies IS NOT AN ARSENAL SUPPORTER but a former referee.

    I also received this mail from two different sources in fact.

    The real outrage is that this has to appear on an Arsenal related website. It should have appeared on the nation wide media. But those nation wide media are not interested in the football supporters being educated in the rules.

    And that is the real bad thing in all this. Pundits form their opinion and blast it in the heads of football fans who swallow it as if it was the word of god. Maybe the pundits think they are some kinds of gods. False gods in fact.

    I think mr. Davies for this clear article that explains the rules in a far better way than I ever could

  • Sonde

    I can see why d ref issued a red card. He followed madrid n CR7 on twitter so Im not amazed to read this comment from d writer bcos I can see u r an anti man utd

  • MIKE

    regardless of the Rules I don’t really care if the ref gave a red he saw the foul as dangerous. The only thing that bothers me about the red card was it robbed Modirc from the well deserved credit when he came on and really turned the game around for Real Madrid Modric does not get the respect he deserves in since arriving in Madrid. I think many would prefer Jose Mourinho play a spanish midfielder over Modric.

    But if you go back and watch that game It was NOT that ManU were reduced to ten that really changed their ability to defend. They had the lead so Ferguson could have subbed a forward for another DM and held RM 1-0 to the end BUT Mourinho put on Modric who was just brilliant he was what changed that game once he scored Ferguson’s game plan was out the door now he had to attack with only 10.

    So for me the travesty was that RM’s victory was tainted by that Red card I think RM would have won regardless

    I admit thanks to a Arsenal selling RVP to ManU they are the best team in the EPL at the moment but even Man U has one of the weakest squads they have had in years if you ask me the EPL needs to improve Arsenal is just horrible and even with the huge amounts spent by Chelsea and ManCity they are really not good teams anymore. And lets not even talk about Liverpool. Real Madrid deserves to have gone through to the next round they were the better team over all. They did start poorly but that does not mean ManU would have won if not for the Red Card. No more then Arsenal winning the second leg in Munich makes them a better team or even on pair with Bayern.

  • Sam

    @ Sunust – thank you, I do not believe I could have phrased it any better. Richard Morgan and David have not offered any facts or evidence in their argument. It is very close to a ‘this is wrong because I believe it is’ argument.

    It is a very blurred line between red and yellow, but even Manchester United fans should agree that any time you run full speed at the ball with your foot at chest height you open yourself up to such a decision. I think the point about Vidic being hit is a good one, but much harder to see since close to 10 players are within 5 meters of each other on a corner, whereas Nani and Arbeloa were the only ones near the ball on the red card.

    Again, I am not saying it was red or yellow, I am just pointing out that if Nani had kept his foot down he would never have given the ref the opportunity to make such a decision (right or wrong).

  • Andrei

    @John The topic of Lopez punching Vidic did come up in my conversation with the ref I know. According to him the UEFA guidance there is to look if it was part of ‘natural athletic position’. In other words were Lopez and Nani doing what they were supposed to do given the circumstances. Did they violate the laws and if they did was it deliberate. In Lopez’s case he did what goalies are expected to do within the rules and his hands were where they were supposed to be so no law was broken. The ref deemed that Lopez didn’t do anything beyond that natural play to deliberatly hit Vidic. To use the analogy if had Nani used his head or chest to play the ball and hit Arbeloa no punishment would have been rendered.He deliberatly decided to use his foot above the wais which was against the rules and this action endangered Arbeloa so it was adjudged as a serious foul play. Bottom line: it was a correct call as in ‘according to the law’ however as a United supporter you may consider it ‘bad’ or ‘harsh’ as in ‘I don’t like it’.

  • uk

    Very well written and objective article. I wish such objectivity could also be applied when arsenal matters are being discussed

  • Limpar's Wand

    After watching the game, i think to focus on that decision is to miss the point somewhat. Playing with 10 men does not automatically mean you are going to lose. I mean, until that point (and even after) Man U were looking dangerous on the counter and missed chances to score.

    Perhaps if the whole place hadn’t started crying about the supposed injustice and completely lost focus for a good 20 minutes, all conducted by the manager himself, they would have made it. Real certainly didn’t play that well.

    Personally, I was delighted they lost. And the fact they immediately turned to blame a referee when they themselves threw the game away made it all the sweeter. There’s a certain amount of karma seeing the Old Trafford crowd complain about a referee, it must be said.

  • nicky

    I sympathise entirely with the Man Utd manager over the Nani sending off. He had no plan B because he never needs one. Referees at Old Trafford invariably know their place and it was just bad luck that Mr Cakir knew the rules and (surprise, surprise) decided to apply them fairly instead of first realising at which ground he was officiating.
    Of course he will never be allowed anywhere near Manchester again and as Tasos says, Mal Davies is, quite rightly, permanently banned from OT until he grovels at the feet of the manager. He must realise that any adverse criticism must be first submitted to OT for vetting by the manager. The BBC failed to do this, paid the price and the Corporation now toe the line. The MOTD team now broadcst from Manchester, rumoured from OT, with the manager first vetting the script in a next door studio.
    We must all know our place.

  • WalterBroeckx

    On second tought… mmm maybe we are Utd haters 😉 🙂

  • Ben L

    Roy Keane looked like he was about to belt everyone else who said it was a yellow card that night!!:)

  • goonergerry

    This is a good informative article, though I cannot agree with the paragraph which draws a parallel between football laws and employment rules.
    I also cannot see how the absence of intent strengthens the case for sending Nani off.
    Its far from clear that there was sufficient contact to warrant a red card. The player who Nani tackled was uninjured-questions about dangerous play are usually line calls-relating to the degree of force used.

    I believe that there are other factors at play whenever a British club plays either of the Spanish big two in a major European encounter.

    In recent years, referees always seem to have a very significant influence on the outcome of such games. The games are always refereed in favour of Spanish teams-and I mean always. Play acting by Spanish teams in the face of physical challenges is always rewarded.

    Has anyone ever seen a player red carded for kicking the ball away a split second after the ref blew in any other encounter as Van Persie was when we went out to Barca?

    What we see with Nani is similarly the maximum possible interpretation against an English club. When the roles are reversed when Chelsea played Barca in the infamous semi the referee ignored successive blatant penalty appeals from Chelsea to ensure Barca went through.

    I have to say that whenever the big two Spanish clubs start to struggle in big games involving English clubs-the referee steps in-in their favour. It happens too frequently for it to be coincidence. Why is another matter.

  • Aladin

    I am an Arsenal fan but I want to put the incident in perspective. The issue is not intent but the end result, am I correct ? But what if I (as a player of course) am making a clearance but an opponent throws his body on my kicking foot to frustrate my intention ? Am I to be blamed ? Thats what happened to Nani on that fateful evening I think,. He was focusing on the high pass and he wanted to intercept the pass. Tell me which part of his anatomy could he have used if not his foot ? Arbeola on the other hand came from behind to control the ball with his chest while at the same time was well aware of Nani’s action. He knew that if he goes in to control the ball with his chest he runs the risk of hurting himself. He knew it because he was coming from behind and saw Nanis right foot protruding to block the pass. Now pleAse remember that Nanis stud were NOT facing Arbeolas chest !

  • Stuart

    David,
    The basis of a yellow card is not based on the outcome of a challenge but rather the challenge itself and the potential outcome. Challenges that potentially could result in damaging circumstances are met with a Red card.

    Clear red all day long.

  • ARSENAL 13

    Red any day.

    Nani (may be dint have the intention to hurt the player, but he definitely intended to put him off.

    Well, If Ashley Williams could have killed the kid, then so could Nani.

  • Gunz

    @ Aladdin
    If Arbeola was trying using his head/chest to control the ball, he was doing the right thing. If Nani was using his extended foot, above waist height, that could result in somebody getting hurt. Also doesn’t tell, who was actually in the right to intercept that ball?

  • Gunz

    Also, Red any day!

  • uk

    @goonergerry,
    You must also remember in that barca chelsea match, d ref gave abidal a red, wen anelka tripped over his own feet. The conspiracy theory works both ways, its however always the losers who cry about it in the end.

  • Andy Kelly

    It was a terrible tackle. It could have killed Arbeloa.

  • Andy Kelly

    Seriously, it doesn’t help matters when so many media “experts” don’t know the laws of the game.

  • Mandy Dodd

    Strange, after that game, Fergie refuses to speak to the press, gets left alone. Wenger , after going out of the CL does speak to the press, and at some point, makes a vague reference to a wakeup call for English football. The media crucify the person who at least had the decency to speak to them. I suspect that Fergie knew he had …erm tactically, totally fcuked up in that game…..although some Arsenal fans these days claim Fergie is above making mistakes.

  • Gunz

    @Walter+all
    Was it in this match Fergie obstructed the linesman from running his line, during play. They showed a replay of it happening.
    Or am i getting mixed up with another ManU game?
    There has been many times, i’ve seen Fergus out of his Technical Area.
    What are the rules about such things?

  • Gunz

    “…many times, many games,….

  • ARSENAL 13

    @gunz,

    If therz any manager who doesn’t deserve the respect he gets, it is Fergie. How lucky we are not to have him here….if his claims of Arsenal approach before be joined Utd are true.

  • Domhuail

    Mal is a referee acquaintance of mine and wrote this excellent review about the United-Real game and especially about SAF and his attitude. Did the Nani ejection hurt united…no doubt…was it justified…the ref thought so as explained by Mal….so end of story.
    It is time we stopped dissecting officials calls which are impossible to change and start looking at the bigger picture…how bad some of our EPL officials are and how incompetent and indifferent the PGMOL are in the EPL. This hurts all teams, not just Arsenal…an injustice to one team is an injustice to all EPL teams. There are bigger things than Club partisanship….like the future of Football!

  • uk

    For maybe the first I appreciate domhuail’s comments. I hope, wen arsenal loses in such circumstances, you would remain stoic in such views. Its quite interesting the degree of objectivity applied to all things non-arsenal on here, kudos.

  • Adam

    @Domhuail, Well said sir.

  • Gf60

    The words “challenge” and “tackle” are appearing throughout the comments. Neither applied as Nani was literally only watching the ball. Mal’s excellent analysis of both the laws and what happened was interesting… but imho there has to be a rule (within a rule) allowing for common sense to be applied. It was not applied here…and I’m no MFU apologist. Just like the spuds, any bit of bad news for MFU is good news for me. But watching a potentially great game spoilt was one hell of a disappointment. Unlike today’s result of course!

  • Andrei

    @Gf60 “…allowing for common sense to be applied” is a recipe for disaster. As history teaches us countless atrocities and acts of injustice have been committed by simply applying so called common sense.

  • Andrei

    @Domhuail Ironically EPL officials favoring Manchester United hurts them big time in the European competitions as it leaves United unprepared to deal with adverse situation on the field. I do believe United had the team to win it all in CL this year but they got undone by the 10 minute meltdown after Nani’s red card.

  • Domhuail

    Andrei…my point exactly and also agree that United had a team that could have gone all the way, but their loss of control and SAF’s tactical failure when Modric came on was enough to condemn them to another season of CL misses. At least when we went out of the CL against Barca, we were genuinely screwed by the referee…..United could have held on for the remaining minutes but they seemed to lose their determination….maybe they were too shocked by having a referee that actually had the nerve to make a crucial call against them?

  • Gf60

    @ Andrei. In view of the obituary below, maybe you’re right:

    Today we mourn the passing of a beloved old friend, Common Sense , who has
    been with us for many years.
    No one knows for sure how old he was, since his birth records were long ago
    lost in bureaucratic red tape.
    He will be remembered as having cultivated such valuable lessons as:
    – Knowing when to come in out of the rain;
    – Why the early bird gets the worm;
    – Life isn’t always fair;
    – and maybe it was my fault.

    Common Sense lived by simple, sound financial policies (don’t spend more
    than you can earn) and reliable strategies (adults, not children, are in charge).

    His health began to deteriorate rapidly when well-intentioned but
    overbearing regulations were set in place including the right to flog a ticket to a football match at cost price.
    Reports of a 6-year-old boy charged with sexual harassment for kissing a
    classmate; teens suspended from school for using mouthwash after lunch; and
    a teacher fired for reprimanding an unruly student, only worsened his condition.

    Common Sense lost ground when parents attacked teachers for doing the job
    that they themselves had failed to do in disciplining their unruly children.

    It declined even further when schools were required to get parental consent
    to administer sun lotion or an aspirin to a student; but could not inform
    parents when a student became pregnant and wanted to have an abortion.

    Common Sense lost the will to live as the churches became businesses; and
    criminals received better treatment than their victims.

    Common Sense took a beating when you couldn’t defend yourself from a burglar
    in your own home and the burglar could sue you for assault.

    Common Sense finally gave up the will to live, after a woman failed to
    realize that a steaming cup of coffee was hot. She spilled a little in her
    lap, and was promptly awarded a huge settlement.

    Common Sense was preceded in death, by his parents, Truth and Trust, by his
    wife, Discretion, by his daughter, Responsibility, and by his son, Reason.

    He is survived by his 4 stepbrothers;
    I Know My Rights
    I Want It Now
    Someone Else Is To Blame
    I’m A Victim

    Not many attended his funeral because so few realized he was gone.
    If you still remember him, pass this on.
    If not, join the majority and do nothing.

  • uk

    @gf60
    Hear! Hear!!

  • Elvis

    @gf60 : TL;DR
    Common sense says allowing referees to use common sense in a broad sense is stupid. There is too much leeway for corruption. (EPL refereeing anyone?)
    PS : The easiest way to recognize a spud troll : “I’m an arsenal supporter but… Blah blah blah”
    ManUre fan : “I’m not a ManU supporter but… Blah blah blah”
    Don’t insult our intelligence here. Only a minority of arsenal fans are Morons(iq<50) – the AAA and you can find them at Le grove!

  • Highamsparkgunner

    Not much to do with the article but definately about the same game. How comes the whole of the media seem to completely ignore Rafaels handball on the line which stopped the ball going in and should also have been a red card.that is how bias that referee was .
    I have seen no mention in the media of the totally wrong offside decision against walcott in Munich or the corner that was given as a goal kick. You can forget the countless fouls given against Arsenal for tackling the Bayern players fairly .
    Where was all the media reaction to this.
    It just goes to show how far the media is up Fergies arse

  • Limpar

    This what would normally happen at Old Trafford, hence the national outcry :
    http://m.youtube.com/watch?feature=related&v=2wShKHH0tBQ

  • Limpar

    & that was at Stamford bridge!

  • Gf60

    According to the rules as outlined…Dempsey at Spurs a definite red but he got a yellow. Almost identical to Nani but Dempsey knew that there were many players around him. Common sense ruled.

    As for McManaman…double red in my book (should be banned/jailed for 10 weeks) and he doesn’t even get a foul against him. Knee high and a real leg breaker.

    Thoughts?

    Warm and wet sloppy kisses to any stray Fulham supporters!

  • elkieno

    Comom Fulham, even better it was Berba who did them in. Bale nearly got injured, it would be best for everyone concerned if he was to miss a couple of games – (altho I never wish injury on a player, EVER)but for him to miss a few games as precautionary measures before UEFA Cup stuff, would be ideal..
    COYG!!!