Tag Archives: jim

Neil Lennon given three-match ban by Scottish FA

Lennon set to miss Celtic's title celebrations as SFA hit manager with three-game ban

, having been found guilty of breaching three rules after rushing on to the pitch at full-time following the Hoops' William Hill Scottish Cup semi-final defeat to Hearts at Hampden to confront referee Euan Norris.

Lennon also received an additional suspended three-match ban which was to come into effect if any act of misconduct was committed by him before the end of this season.

Rant: Microphones picked up Lennon shouting at St Mirren's Jim Goodwin last month

Rant: Microphones picked up Lennon shouting at St Mirren's Jim Goodwin last month

SIX NATIONS 2013: Andy Farrell – Jim Telfer "arrogant England" jibes are just a Scotsman trying to stir passion

Farrell: Telfer's 'arrogant England' jibes are just a Scotsman trying to stir up passion

By
Alex Lowe, Press Association

PUBLISHED:

16:15 GMT, 29 January 2013

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UPDATED:

17:53 GMT, 29 January 2013

JIM TELFER EXCLUSIVE

Lions legend: Jim Telfer was critical of England

England are too arrogant, pretentious and condescending to realise they're not as good as they think they are!

Click here to read the full explosive interview

Andy Farrell has insisted he does not recognise the accusation of 'arrogance' that has been levelled at the England squad by Lions legend Jim Telfer.

Responding to Sportsmail's exclusive interview with the former Scotland coach, Farrell revealed the players have laughed off the jibes, which he believes are designed to get the Scots fired up before their trip to Twickenham for Saturday’s Calcutta Cup showdown.

The England management under Stuart Lancaster have worked hard over the last 12 months to eradicate any sense of arrogance from the national team.

Big week ahead: The England squad in training at Pennyhill Park in Bagshot on Tuesday morning

Big week ahead: The England squad in training at Pennyhill Park in Bagshot on Tuesday morning

Farrell said: 'I definitely don’t recognise anything he has said.

'People say this every year about the English anyway. It has stuck now. That is why we take it tongue-in-cheek. We know exactly what we are about.

'A couple of the lads have seen it and they are all taking the mick out of each other. They think it’s quite funny about those who have been mentioned. There are a few jokes flying around the place.'

Telfer told Sportsmail that England, who beat New Zealand on the same weekend as Scotland lost to Tonga, are not as good as they think they are.

Impressionable England scrum-half Ben Youngs (above) and wing Chris Ashton (below)

Impressionable England scrum-half Ben Youngs (above) and wing Chris Ashton (below)

Impressionable England scrum-half Ben Youngs (above) and wing Chris Ashton (below)

He said: 'They are too arrogant, too pretentious and too condescending to realise they have a problem.'

Chris Ashton, Danny Care, Ben Youngs and Manu Tuilagi were named as 'very impressionable' players who let the All Blacks win go to their heads.

There was credit for England’s coaching team of Lancaster, Farrell and Graham Rowntree, who Telfer described as: 'All from the North and all down to earth.'

Lancaster’s first aim when he took interim charge of the England squad a year ago was to reconnect the national team to their roots.

On the ball: England backs coach Andy Farrell, and with captain Chris Robshaw (below) on Tuesday

On the ball: England backs coach Andy Farrell, and with captain Chris Robshaw (below) on Tuesday

Talking tactics: England backs coach Andy Farrell (right) with captain Chris Robshaw on Tuesday

Top post: England boss Stuart Lancaster

Top post: England boss Stuart Lancaster

In the wake of the 2011 World Cup disappointments, Lancaster wanted to restore a sense of pride in the jersey from within the squad and a sense of pride in the England team from the public.

England now prepare for the RBS 6 Nations in Leeds rather than in Portugal. They drew 6,000 to an open training session at Headingley and Lancaster last Friday held a seminar for 500 grass-roots coaches.

Telfer’s comments have certainly stoked the boiler ahead of Saturday’s Six Nations opener at Twickenham, where Scotland have not won in 30 years.

'He’s Scottish isn’t he, very passionate about his country and he wants to give his lads as much belief as he can,' Farrell said. 'He cares about his country.

'It is him trying to do the right thing by his own country, to try and motivate them.

'That is what he has always been about really – passion and stirring a few feathers up along the way. It is what you want, a bit of passion.'

Brendan Rodgers leaps to Luis Suarez"s defence

Lay off Luis! Rodgers leaps to Suarez's defence… as striker fears he may not win another penalty

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UPDATED:

21:43 GMT, 18 October 2012

Luis Suarez fears he may never win another penalty as a Liverpool player after being vilified for going to ground too easily.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers revealed Suarez’s growing despair over a controversy that has attracted stinging criticism from opposing players and managers and even FIFA vice-president Jim Boyce.

Floored: Luis Suarez goes to ground against Stoke

Floored: Luis Suarez goes to ground against Stoke

Rodgers admitted he was at a loss to explain the dive that incensed Stoke boss Tony Pulis but insisted there was no justification for an outcry that has left Suarez fearing referees will now deny him even legitimate penalty appeals.

‘It is a constant theme, and it just seems too easy to jump on his back at the moment,’ said Rodgers, after being asked about Suarez being called a ‘cheat’ by Arsenal defender Laurent Koscielny. ‘It just seems he’s not going to be awarded a penalty, whatever happens, and certainly he feels himself he’s not sure what he has to do to get one.

‘I get the chance to work with him every day and see the type of person and character he is. He’s had it rough, but people forget he is a box player who twists and turns and asks questions of defenders. I can’t think of too many who do as much of that type of work inside the area, so naturally he is going to be involved in more (penalty) incidents.

Going down: Suarez in action in Uruguay's midweek 4-1 defeat in Bolivia

Going down: Suarez in action in Uruguay's midweek 4-1 defeat in Bolivia

‘We don’t want players going down without cause, and, against Stoke, he hit the deck for a reason I’m not sure of. But I respect the sort of player he is and can understand why he is beginning to wonder what he has to do for a spot-kick to be given.’

Rodgers ruled out recalling Andy Carroll from his loan spell at West Ham, despite a remarkable injury jinx striking Fabio Borini once more.

‘I haven’t considered Andy coming back,’ he said. ‘He has gone to West Ham to get games under his belt. We have people watching when he plays and reporting back on how he does.

‘It is a setback losing Fabio, and you have to feel for him, considering this is the third year in succession that he has been injured in October and ruled out for three months.

‘It was a hamstring last season and shoulder injury the season before. This time, it’s a fractured foot. Each one has been in October and has kept him out the same length of time. We are thinking of sending him on holiday next October!’

Luis Suarez rebuts Jim Boyce diving claims by saying he does not know FIFA chief

Who are ya Suarez rebuts Boyce's diving slur by saying he's never heard of FIFA chief

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UPDATED:

09:15 GMT, 13 October 2012


Criticism: Luis Suarez has been castigated

Criticism: Luis Suarez has been castigated

Luis Suarez has responded angrily to FIFA vice-president Jim Boyce's comments about the Liverpool striker.

Northern Irishman Boyce, Britain's representative on FIFA, described Suarez's clear dive against Stoke as 'nothing less than cheating' and said simulation was a 'cancer' in the game.

That prompted the Uruguayan Football Association (AUF) to write to FIFA defending their player and demanding Boyce be referred to the governing body's Ethics Committee.

And Suarez, who played for his country in last night's 3-0 World Cup qualifying defeat to Argentina, has now has his say.

In an interview on Argentinian radio, quoted in the Sun, the 25-year-old said: 'This guy (Boyce), I've no idea who he is.

'I don't know why he has been talking about me. He certainly can't be well-known and he wants to get publicity.

'Let him carry on talking. My job is to play football and to try to do so in the best way possible.

'What he has said does not affect me. I am not interested in what he has to say.

In action: He played for Uruguay as they lost 3-0 to Argentina

In action: He played for Uruguay as they lost 3-0 to Argentina

'It's been important to have the support of the Uruguayan FA and the people.'

Suarez has always been a controversial figure, with the diving discussion adding to last season's race row with Patrice Evra, for which he was banned for eight matches.

And he said: 'I have lived through a lot in the past year, with people saying things about me, but I have continued playing and proving my job is what happens on the pitch.'

The AUF's letter, signed by the organisation's president Sebastian Bauza and general secretary Anibal de Olivera, described Boyce's remarks as 'at odds with the principles of world football governing.'

It continued: 'The code of ethics of
FIFA, in its article three, clearly states: “Officers should be aware of
the importance of their role and the obligations and responsibilities
that entails.”

'Deliberately
ignoring his position and role, Mr Boyce has referred specifically to a
football player, encouraging and provoking hostility towards him.'

The
letter also included a list of six steps the AUF want FIFA to take,
including withdrawing their confidence in Boyce, referring him to the
ethics committee and expressing their regret to Suarez.

Boyce was talking earlier this week as he
called for football associations to take retrospective action against
players who dive.

Boyce said: 'I have seen several
incidents recently, and I watched the latest Suarez incident two or
three times, and to me it is nothing less than a form of cheating.

'It
is becoming a little bit of a cancer within the game and I believe if
it is clear to everyone that it is simulation then that person is trying
to cheat and they should be severely punished for that.

'It
can be dealt with retrospectively by disciplinary committees, and it is
done so in some associations, and I believe that is the correct thing
to do.'

Who Suarez says he does not know who Jim Boyce is

Who Suarez says he does not know who Jim Boyce is

Suarez

FIFA chief: Diving is the cancer of football

Diving is the cancer of football and we must stamp out, says FIFA chief

|

UPDATED:

21:30 GMT, 9 October 2012

FIFA vice-president Jim Boyce has labelled diving a 'cancer' within football and called for guilty players to be banned retrospectively.

Stoke boss Tony Pulis reignited the debate when he called Liverpool striker Luis Suarez’s dive against his side on Sunday an ‘embarrassment’.

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers leapt to Suarez’s defence on Monday, claiming he had been unfairly ‘vilified’ for his theatrics on Sunday, when Tottenham’s Gareth Bale was also guilty of going to ground too easily. But Boyce believes the Uruguayan’s actions were 'a form of cheating'.

Taking a tumble: Tottenham's Gareth Bale is getting a reputation for diving

Taking a tumble: Tottenham's Gareth Bale is getting a reputation for diving

Boyce, who is Great Britain’s representative on the FIFA board, said: ‘I have seen several incidents recently and I watched the latest Suarez incident two or three times. To me it is nothing less than a form of cheating.

‘It is becoming a little bit of a cancer within the game and I believe if it is clear to everyone that it is simulation then that person is trying to cheat and they should be severely punished.

‘It can be dealt with retrospectively by disciplinary committees, and it is done so in some associations, and I believe that is the correct thing to do.

‘It can at times be very hard for referees to judge whether something is a foul or a fair tackle and if players are diving then it makes their job even harder.’

Laughing stock: Luis Suarez was up to his old tricks against Stoke at Anfield

Laughing stock: Luis Suarez was up to his old tricks against Stoke at Anfield

Make a stand: Michael Kightly

Make a stand: Michael Kightly

Pulis called for players found guilty of
diving to receive a three-match ban, but simulation is currently only a
yellow card offence. The FA does not allow players to be punished
retrospectively, although the regulations are ‘often reviewed’.

The Premier League has previously suggested a three-man panel to rule on key incidents each week and would also be open to further discussions on the matter.

Stoke winger Michael Kightly, 26, believes something must be done to eradicate diving.

He told the Stoke Sentinel: ‘When you get a little touch and he (Suarez) is screaming like he has broken his leg you do think, “Is he hurt”

'But nine times out of 10, he’s not. It is something we are trying to get out of the game. Referees have to try to stamp down on it.’

Liverpool boss Rodgers leapt to the defence of another of his stars, Joe Allen, last night — rapping Alan Shearer after the Match of the Day pundit said Allen’s passing lacked a sense of adventure.

‘I saw something the other day criticising Joe Allen for not playing risk passes,’ said Rodgers. ‘Unbelievable. Our so called pundits who don’t know the dynamics of a team and how it functions.

‘Joe’s role is to keep the ball. And that, in Britain, is a special talent.’

Aviva Premiership weekend match guide: September 8-9

Your guide to the weekend's Aviva Premiership rugby action

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UPDATED:

13:27 GMT, 7 September 2012

There's a busy weekend of action ahead in the Aviva Premiership. Keep up to date with all the news with Sportsmail's guide to all the big matches.

SATURDAY

Bath v Wasps
The Rec, kick off 2.15pm, live on ESPN

Wasps look to the power of England lock Tom Palmer to topple Bath. He makes his first start since rejoining from Stade Francois after substitute duties in the defeat by Harlequins last week. England hooker Lee Mears makes his 250th appearance for Bath in a pack including ex-Scotland No 8 Simon Taylor for Springbok flanker Francois Louw.

Prediction: Home win.

Leicester v Worcester
Welford Road, kick off 3pm

Worcester keep an unchanged team, despite the home loss to Bath, to gain a first win at fortress Welford Road where a record 14,000 spectators have bought season tickets. Tigers need another scrum-half in Sam Harrison to cover for Micky Young who joins England’s Ben Youngs on the sidelines.

Prediction: Home win.

Hands on: Scrum-half Sam Harrison (L) will have another opportunity to impress for Leicester

Hands on: Scrum-half Sam Harrison (L) will have another opportunity to impress for Leicester

London Irish v Gloucester
Madejski Stadium, kick off 3pm

No starting place for Mike Tindall in a rejigged Gloucester team including fit-again captain Jim Hamilton. Harry Trinder starts ahead of substitute Tindall and prop Shaun Knight is preferred to Rupert Harden. Irish, flattened 40-3 by Saracens last week, are led by flanker Declan Danaher.

Prediction: Away win.

Sale v Saracens
Salford City Stadium, kick 4.30pm live on ESPN

All eyes will be on Danny Cipriani in his first start for Sale after his arrival from Australia. But the fly half, who was a substitute in the defeat at Exeter, does not have No 8 Andy Powell to provide protection due to a broken cheekbone. Saracens, including ex-Sale ace Charlie Hodgson, are unchanged and won 45-9 on their last visit to the north-west.

Prediction: Away win.

SUNDAY

Northampton v Exeter
Franklin’s Gardens, kick off 3pm

Northampton’s Jim Mallinder has warned his unchanged team, following the
win at Gloucester, to be wary of high-flying Exeter. England flanker
Tom Wood continues his comeback following a foot injury against a team
who demolished Sale 43-6, scoring five tries. Exeter also have Fijian
centre Sireli Naqelevuki as back up on the bench.

Prediction: Home win.

Same again: Northampton flanker Tom Wood continues his comeback following a foot injury

Same again: Northampton flanker Tom Wood continues his comeback following a foot injury

Lance Armstrong backed by mentor Jim Ochowicz

Armstrong's mentor Ochowicz insists cyclist has earned every single victory

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UPDATED:

14:11 GMT, 25 August 2012

Lance Armstrong has earned every victory he has achieved over the course of his career despite his decision not to contest doping charges, according to long-time friend Jim Ochowicz.

Armstrong, a seven-time winner of the Tour de France and one of the most high-profile athletes on the planet, on Friday opted not to challenge the US Anti-Doping Agency's charges against him, claiming to be 'finished with all this nonsense' after a long-running battle against allegations of cheating.

As a result, the USADA have stripped him of all his titles and imposed a lifetime ban, although that still has to be ratified by the sport's governing body, who could take the decision to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

Backed: Lance Armstrong has the support of his friend Jim Ochowicz

Backed: Lance Armstrong has the support of his friend Jim Ochowicz

Until then, though, questions remain over Armstrong's previously illustrious legacy, but Ochowicz, who has mentored Armstrong throughout his career and is the current manager of BMW Racing, is not buying in to that.

'I think Lance did a lot for the sport. We're all grateful to him for what he's done. I think he's earned every victory he's had,” he said in a statement.

'It's a tough day for cycling but we're going to carry on from here. I'm a friend of Lance's. I support his decision to call it. He's done so much for our sport over the years.

'I'm sad about what's transpired but at the same time, I wish him luck with his family. I love them, I love him.'

Stripped: Armstrong's titles have been taken

Stripped: Armstrong's titles have been taken

Armstrong, who was charged along with five associates in June, sought a temporary restraining order against the agency's legal action but that was dismissed in a federal court in Austin, Texas on Monday.

USADA claim once that action failed Armstrong had until midnight on Thursday to contest the evidence against him in an arbitrary hearing, and was fully aware of the consequences of not doing so.

The statement revealed that over a dozen witnesses, up to 10 of whom are believed to be former team-mates, had agreed to testify against Armstrong.

It also claimed the USADA received evidence Armstrong was doping in 1996, prior to his battle with testicular cancer, which set his Tour triumphs in the most heroic of contexts, and in 2009, after making his return to the sport following his initial retirement.

David Longmuir facing calls for resignation

Chaos mounts as SPL boss Longmuir faces clubs' call to quit

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UPDATED:

21:00 GMT, 8 July 2012

David Longmuir is facing calls for his resignation as the Scottish Football League chief executive continues to clash with his members over which division Charles Green's newco Rangers should play in next season.

It also emerged that if Longmuir's bid to launch Sevco Scotland Ltd directly into the First Division is rejected by the SFL clubs, then it will result in logistical chaos on the eve of the new season.

Under pressure: David Longmuir gets grilled as Jim Ballantyne looks on

Under pressure: David Longmuir gets grilled as Jim Ballantyne looks on

All 30 SFL clubs will meet at Hampden on Friday, when Longmuir will discover their response to a letter he sent out to them at the weekend.

The two main points of that document are that the clubs should first vote on whether or not to accept Sevco Scotland Ltd into the SFL, then, whether they are in favour of allowing the SFL Board (rather than the clubs) to choose which division they will compete in.

The second vote will hinge on the SFL gaining certain concessions from the SPL regarding play-offs and a fairer distribution of income.

Should Longmuir get his way, Board member and SFL President Jim Ballantyne, who is also chairman of Airdrie United, will decline to vote due to a conflict of interest, since the Lanarkshire outfit would, as losing play-off finalists, automatically be promoted to the First Division if Sevco (like any other new applicant) are forced to begin life in the bottom tier.

That will leave Longmuir, vice pres ident Ewen Cameron (Alloa), Anne McKeown (Arbroath), Malcolm Mackay (Queen's Park), Gordon McDougall (Livingston), Gilbert Lawrie (Dumbarton), Ken Ferguson (Brechin) and Jim Leishman (Dunfermline) to decide the newco's fate.

However, the contents of the letter have infuriated many SFL clubs, who regard the latest move as an attempt to hijack the democratic procedures of the organisation in order to ensure entry into the First Division for the new-look Rangers.

One chairman said: 'What they're attempting to do is scandalous. They're just making up the rules as they go along.

'The two main votes will be decided on a straight 16-14 majority. I don't think that anyone objects to this new Rangers joining the Third Division, but I believe there will be enough dissenters to prevent the Board from gerrymandering them into the First.

'If Longmuir's motion is rejected, then his competence would have to be questioned. This is all part of a bullying campaign, which was underlined last week when the SPL's chief executive, Neil Doncaster, told us that the SPL clubs couldn't afford to pay the annual 1.8million settlement fee to the SFL if Rangers drop into the Third Division and Sky walk away from their TV deal.

'Meanwhile, the SFA's chief executive, Stewart Regan, seems to want to exploit the Rangers crisis in order to push through his own reforms. He's been working away at this for months.'

If the clubs allow Rangers to join the SFL, but then refuse to grant their Board permission to decide which division they should compete in, then Longmuir would be forced to call another general meeting on July 20 – SFL rules state that five working days' notice must be given – to vote on that issue.

With the Ramsdens Cup beginning just eight days later, time is running out for the SFL to sort the mess out.

Should Rangers' SPL place be taken by Dundee, they'll be away to Brechin City: in the less likely event of Dunfermline avoiding demotion, Ally McCoist's side will travel to Forfar.

Then again, if Green's Sevco is denied the opportunity to join the First Division and admitted to the fourth tier, newco Rangers, rather than Stranraer, will have a home tie against Stenhousemuir.

Qatar World Cup 2022 matches could be played at night

World Cup 2022 matches should be played at night to avoid Qatar heat, says FIFA chief Boyce

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UPDATED:

22:42 GMT, 6 July 2012

FIFA should consider playing World Cup matches late at night at Qatar 2022 in order to avoid the extreme heat, says FIFA British vice-president Jim Boyce.

‘We should look at anything that will improve spectator and player comfort,’ said Boyce.

The organisation has come in for criticism for awarding the World Cup to Qatar despite the various problems which will come with it.

Suggestion: FIFA vice-president Jim Boyce (left) with Michel Platini

Suggestion: FIFA vice-president Jim Boyce (left) with Michel Platini

Comment: The frenzied day when an entire region lost its mind

The frenzied day when an entire region lost its mind

For 90 minutes, twice a season – if we're lucky and the two teams play in the same league – an entire region loses its mind.

It's a fixture this part of the world needs and craves, but it is not always happy days.

Neither side emerged from the afternoon with any credit although both tried to justify their behaviour.

Apparently the derby does these things to you.

High stakes: Fourth official Lee Mason steps in to control Martin O'Neill (right) and Alan Pardew

High stakes: Fourth official Lee Mason steps in to control Martin O'Neill (right) and Alan Pardew

The goading, the incitement, the posturing and swearing continued throughout the game.

Newcastle goalkeeping coach Andy Woodman was sent off at half-time following a confrontation with Sunderland fitness coach Jim Henry in the tunnel.

The clatter of helicopters in the grey sky from early morning, the endless sirens echoing across the city – things you will never see and hear on the live TV coverage – were a reminder of the repulsive side to this fixture.

Flashpoint: Referee Mike Dean is surrounded by Sunderland players after Stephane Sessegnon is dismissed

Flashpoint: Referee Mike Dean is surrounded by Sunderland players after Stephane Sessegnon is dismissed

Seeing red: Sunderland captain Lee Cattermole is sent off after the game

Seeing red: Sunderland captain Lee Cattermole is sent off after the game

To reach the main entrance we, too, had to walk through the welcoming committee of baying Geordies held back by doubled-up lines of police officers, horses and dogs waiting to greet the platoon of buses carrying 2,650 Sunderland fans.

A few seconds of foul-mouthed greetings were more than enough.

It is hatred beyond belief.

When he was a nipper, Sir Bobby Robson, arguably the most dignified man to represent either club, went to Newcastle one week, Sunderland the next to get his football fix.

No chance of that happening now.

This is a fixture which brings out the worst in normally rational human beings, not least the players and managers.

Fall guy: Fraizer Campbell brings down Shola Ameobi but Demba Ba missed the resulting penalty (below)

Fall guy: Fraizer Campbell brings down Shola Ameobi but Demba Ba missed the resulting penalty (below)

Fall guy: Fraizer Campbell brings down Shola Ameobi but Demba Ba missed the resulting penalty (below)

Fraizer Campbell manically celebrated Nicklas Bendtner's penalty in front of furious home supporters, which was unbelievably stupid.

Footballers, eh

Midway through the first half, Simon Mignolet was the only one of the 22 players who didn't sprint to the push-and-shove competition in the corner of the pitch when James McClean cleaned out Danny Simpson.

It built up to a confrontation between the two managers after the break, with fourth official Lee Mason stuck in the middle.

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew went directly towards Sunderland counterpart Martin O'Neill, his fists pumping, when Shola Ameobi was brought down for the penalty which Demba Ba missed.

'I have never done that before,' said the Newcastle boss.

Surprisingly he did the same again when Ameobi equalised.

Not surprisingly, he was not proud of his actions.

Loud and not proud: Pardew clashes with O'Neill

Loud and not proud: Pardew clashes with O'Neill

'I have seen it again and it looked terrible,' he said. 'But it was just sheer relief. You don't understand the pressure there is on this game. Silly things get said and it was really unsavoury but it is a passionate game.

'Maybe our bench and theirs could have handled it better and we could have been more grown up but it gets to you. If we stepped over the line I can only apologise but it happens, you shake hands and it will all be forgotten and we can have a glass of wine.'

At loggerheads: James McLean (left) and Danny Simpson (right)

At loggerheads: James McLean (left) and Danny Simpson (right)

Sadly that did not happen because O'Neill got straight on the Sunderland bus after his press conference, but the repercussions of the spat and the game were still being felt.

Newcastle coach John Carver had appeared at the back of the Press room and accused the Sunderland manager of lying after O'Neill said one of Newcastle's staff went into the referee's room at half-time.

'I can tell you that is completely untrue,' said Pardew, on the record.

Late Sho': Shola Ameobi smacks the leveller in injury time

Late Sho': Shola Ameobi smacks the leveller in injury time

It all left a very unpleasant taste. Before he departed, O'Neill said: 'I have been a fair length of time in this game and I am sure I will get worse thrown at me and I will probably give out.

'It was everything people had told me to expect, the noise was deafening, the hostility, fans fervour, absolutely everything and in a perverse sort of way I was enjoying it, but you have to be really perverse. I am hoping we'll be in the same division to do it all again.'

No love lost: O'Neill glares at Pardew

No love lost: O'Neill glares at Pardew

On Sunday night my wife worked a shift in one of the region’s accident and emergency departments.

The night of a derby game is one of the worst of the year, down there with New Year’s Eve, bank holidays and the final pay-day before Christmas in terms of its drunken debauchery, nonsense and violence.

Before the game she had said: ‘Pray for a draw because it might make our night easier.’

So at least the nurses, doctors and police were happy.