Tag Archives: leniency

UEFA appeal against own punishment for Serbia for racism against England

Embarrassed UEFA appeals against its OWN sanctions on Serbia for racism in England U21 match

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UPDATED:

14:03 GMT, 26 December 2012

UEFA have appealed against the sanctions its control and disciplinary body imposed on Serbia following the incidents in the U21 Euro 2013 play-off match against England in Krusevac on October 16.

Michel Platini, president of the European football governing body, was embarrassed by the leniency shown towards Serbia who were only fined 65,900 for the racist behaviour of their supporters.

In addition to the fine issued on December 13, the Serbian U21 side was ordered to play their next match behind closed doors.

Appeal: Michel Platini was embarrassed by the leniency of UEFA's sanctions

Appeal: Michel Platini was embarrassed by the leniency of UEFA's sanctions

Four players were given suspensions between two and four games and two coaches were also banned.

Danny Rose, who was dismissed after the
final whistle for kicking the ball away in anger, complained he had been
subjected to monkey chants throughout the match and as he left the
pitch.

Astonishingly, England players Steven Caulker and Tom Ince were also hit with suspensions by the Control and Disciplinary Body.

An official statement by UEFA read: 'As per the UEFA Disciplinary Regulations, the UEFA disciplinary inspector has the right to open disciplinary investigations and to lodge appeals against decisions taken by the Control and Disciplinary Body.

'Having reviewed the motivated decisions for the sanctions imposed in this specific case, which have also been provided to all parties, the UEFA disciplinary inspector felt it necessary to immediately confirm his intention to appeal on UEFA's behalf.'

Shocking: England players including Danny Rose (left) were racially abused

Shocking: England players including Danny Rose (left) were racially abused

In what could prove to be a ridiculous twist, the UEFA disciplinary inspector could appeal against UEFA's appeal.

Tuesday January 8 is the date which the inspector must appeal by, and is also the same deadline which the FA must adhere to if they are to appeal against the sanctions against the England players.

Although issuing a larger fine may well be the outcome of the appeal, a more stringent and effective punishment could be the docking of points for future qualification campaigns.

After the initial punishment was issued PFA chief executive Gordon Taylor said: ‘This is a totally inadequate fine which sends a very poor message out to the football world.

‘I intend to write to Michel Platini
expressing our dissatisfaction and will be asking UEFA to exercise its
powers to appeal against the wholly disproportionate punishments imposed
against Serbia.

‘In addition, we will strongly support the FA in their appeal against the decision to suspend Steven Caulker and Thomas Ince.’

Angry: Rose squares up to Serbia player Milos Ninkovic

Angry: Rose squares up to Serbia player Milos Ninkovic

FA general secretary Alex Horne had condemned the sanctions, which he deemed to be too lenient given the nature of the incident.

'We are disappointed with the sanctions levied by UEFA with regards to the racist behaviour displayed towards England's players,' Horne said earlier this month.

'Let's be clear, racism is unacceptable in any form and should play no part in football.

'The scenes were deplorable and we do not believe the sanction sends a strong enough message.'

Serbia have a history of similar incidents. In 2007, when they met England at this level at the finals in Holland, Nedum Onuoha was subjected to racial abuse.

Their players also brawled with England at the final whistle, charging at England’s bench after Matt Derbyshire made it 2-0.

UEFA fined them around 16,000 at the time, but then after an appeal, doubled it.

List of punishments issued for events during the game
The Serbia Under 21 nation team ordered to play their next UEFA competition home match behind closed doors.
The Football Association of Serbia was fined 80,000 euros.Serbia fitness coach Andreja Milunovic was suspended from all football-related activities for two years, the second of which is suspended for a probationary period of three years.
Serbia assistant coach Predrag Katic was suspended from all football-related activities for two years, the final six months of which are suspended for a probationary period of three years.
Serbia's Goran Causic suspended for four UEFA national team competition matches.
Serbia's Ognjen Mudrinski suspended for three UEFA national team competition matches.
Serbia's Filip Malbasic was suspended for three UEFA national team competition matches.
Serbia's Nikola Ninkovic was suspended for two UEFA national team competition matches.
The disciplinary proceedings opened against Serbia player Aleksandar Pantic were dismissed.
The FA has received a warning for improper conduct by its team (more than five cautions).
England's Steven Caulker suspended for two UEFA national team competition matches.
England's Thomas Ince suspended for one UEFA national team competition match.

Mark Clattenburg saga: Prospect criticise FA for leniency shown to John Mikel Obi

Referees union dismayed by Mikel punishment after Clattenburg confrontation

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UPDATED:

23:34 GMT, 6 December 2012

The referees trade union, Prospect, have revealed their dismay at the 'leniency' of a three-game ban handed to John Mikel Obi after he confronted Mark Clattenburg following Chelsea's stormy Barclays Premier League clash with Manchester United in October.

A Football Association independent regulatory commission handed down Mikel's ban on Thursday, which included a 60,000 fine, after the Chelsea midfielder admitted the charge.

In a statement the FA revealed the sanction would have been 'significantly longer' but for the fact Mikel had believed he had been racially abused by Clattenburg.

Confrontation: Mikel accused Clattenburg after Chelsea played United

Confrontation: Mikel accused Clattenburg after Chelsea played United

A strongly-worded statement from Prospect on Thursday night, however, criticised the length of Mikel's ban, which rules him out of domestic duty until Boxing Day.

'Prospect, the referees trade union, today expressed dismay at the lenient punishment handed down by the FA Regulatory Commission to Chelsea player John Obi Mikel,' the statement read.

'It is vital that officials were given real respect and this decision regrettably gave entirely the wrong message. A player in parks football found guilty of behaviour like Mikel's would have faced a long-term ban.'

National secretary Alan Leighton claimed Mikel's behaviour deserved a heavier sanction despite the mitigating circumstances.

'For entering the referees dressing room and threatening and intimidating the referee to the extent that he feared for his safety the penalty was no longer than had the player been sent off for serious foul play,' Leighton said.

'This did absolutely nothing to further the Respect campaign.'

In the spotlight: Clattenburg missed weeks of action

In the spotlight: Clattenburg missed weeks of action

Leighton added that 'far too much weight had been given to the mitigating factor and that Mikel's behaviour merited a strong deterrent penalty'.

The FA announced Mikel's charge last month in a statement that also confirmed they would take no action against Clattenburg following a complaint by Chelsea that he used a racist remark to their players.

The FA decided there was 'no case to answer' over the allegation the referee said 'shut up you monkey' to Mikel.

Following Thursday's hearing, which Mikel had requested, the FA's regulatory committee revealed those factors had played a key part in the length of the ban.

'The breach of FA Rule E3 was in relation to an incident which occurred in the match official's changing room at the end of Chelsea's fixture against Manchester United on 28 October 2012,' the FA statement read.

'The Regulatory Commission's independent chairman Christopher Quinlan QC emphasised that the Independent Regulatory Commission accepted, as did The FA, that at the time he threatened the referee the player genuinely believed that the referee had racially abused him.

New deal: Mikel has committed his long-term future to Chelsea

New deal: Mikel has committed his long-term future to Chelsea

'But for that factor the suspension would have been significantly longer.'

Mikel, who signed a new five-year deal on Wednesday, will therefore miss the weekend's trip to Sunderland but will be available when Chelsea jet out for the Club World Cup in Japan next week.

His availability when the Blues return from the Far East could be limited though, with the midfielder due to meet up with Nigeria early in the new year for the African Nations Cup.

That tournament begins on January 19, with the players set to convene in the weeks beforehand, and Mikel would be unavailable until February 10 should Nigeria reach the final.

New boss Rafael Benitez appeared to begin preparations for his absence on Wednesday night when he employed David Luiz in midfield at stages of the 6-1 Champions League win over FC Nordsjaelland.

Benitez admitted after the match he was prepared to use Luiz further up the pitch and provide support for holding midfielders Ramires and Oriol Romeu, who both started the game.

Roberto Di Matteo: Chelsea would back rule on sacking players guilty of racist abuse

Chelsea back rule to sack players guilty of racist abuse, insists Di Matteo despite leniency club showed to Terry

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UPDATED:

14:38 GMT, 26 October 2012

Roberto Di Matteo has vowed Chelsea would adhere to any rule change that would see players sacked for racist abuse, despite their refusal to kick John Terry out of the club.

Blues boss Di Matteo was coy about whether he fully endorsed the Professional Footballers' Association's six-point plan to combat racism, which has been drawn up in the wake of the Terry scandal.

But the Italian insisted Chelsea would follow it to the letter if it had the backing of the majority of clubs.

Giving orders: Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo (centre) takes training at Cobham on Friday

Giving orders: Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo (centre) takes training at Cobham on Friday

He said: 'It's a difficult one. If the majority believe that we need a law like that then, as I said, we will obey it and support it.'

He added: 'If it will become a rule, we will play by the rules, as we have always done.

'As a club, we are against any kind of discrimination and, if it does go through then we will support it.'

Chelsea came under heavy fire for
merely fining Terry after he was found guilty by the Football
Association of racially abusing Anton Ferdinand just over a year ago.

The
various punishments meted out to the Blues captain prompted a backlash
among some black players towards both the club and the anti-racism
movement.

'Everybody has an opinion and we must respect that,' Di Matteo added. 'We behave the way we think is right for our club and that's how we're going to go forward.'

Some
players took direct action by refusing to wear T-shirts endorsing the
'Kick It Out' campaign during last week's fixtures, including Anton and
Rio Ferdinand.

It is the
turn of Chelsea's squad to sport them during the warm-up before Sunday's
Barclays Premier League game against Manchester United.

Di Matteo said: 'We are supporting the Kick It Out campaign.

Gesture: John Terry (centre) wore a 'Unite Against Racism' armband in Donestsk this week

Gesture: John Terry (centre) wore a 'Unite Against Racism' armband in Donestsk this week

'It's going to be an individual choice for our players. We're not going to force anybody to, or not to, wear it. But my personal opinion is that we should wear it and we should raise awareness about it and show the support for it.'

The last few days have heralded the first signs of peace breaking out between the Ferdinand brothers and Chelsea pair Terry and Ashley Cole.

Cole, who gave evidence in support of Terry at his criminal trial, was branded a 'choc ice' by United's Ferdinand in the wake of the not guilty verdict in those proceedings. There were fears the pair would not shake hands before Sunday's game but both appear prepared to do so.

Di Matteo said: 'I've always said that from our point of view, we'll play our part. I don't foresee any problems in that sense. I hope that all the players will shake hands.'

There have also been suggestions Ferdinand was prepared to offer his hand to former England defensive partner Terry at Stamford Bridge, even though the latter is still serving his racism ban.

Time to shake hands: Ashley Cole, pictured in training on Friday, is ready to end his feud with the Ferdinands

Time to shake hands: Ashley Cole, pictured in training on Friday, is ready to end his feud with the Ferdinands

Confirming Terry would be at the game, Di Matteo said he would endorse such a gesture, saying: 'I'm always for that, yes.'

However, that may not prevent Chelsea fans abusing Ferdinand, as they did during last season's 3-3 draw with United, which took place during the height of the feud between him and Terry.

Di Matteo said: 'Our fans have been very good, generally, very supportive of our team and respectful. I cannot comment on how every individual supporter in the stadium will react. But I'm sure they'll support our team and push them to a win.'

United boss Sir Alex Ferguson earlier welcomed this week's public declaration of peace from the Ferdinand family but acknowledged the racism issue would not disappear just because of a handshake on Sunday.

'Rio and Anton did the right thing,' he said. 'But the race issue is bubbling along. It's not just completely gone away. The awareness is getting stronger and the PFA are doing their best to support it.

Backing: Sir Alex Ferguson, pictured at Carrington on Friday, has welcomed Rio's calling of a truce with Terry

Backing: Sir Alex Ferguson, pictured at Carrington on Friday, has welcomed Rio's calling of a truce with Terry

'But the FA, UEFA and FIFA have got to do more. That is without question.

'As far as the actual game itself, I think we just need to carry on and concentrate on the football side.'

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers backed the PFA's proposal, and in particular the drive to increase the number of coaches and managers from ethnic minorities in the English game.

'Anything that promotes fair play in terms of jobs and work is very important,' he said.

'There is an awful lot of great work that has gone on in this country over the last 20-odd years and it has moved on a hell of a lot. But you can't become complacent with it and it is certainly something where we must keep ensuring that the standards are correct. For people to get work and jobs, it is the best candidate who should get it – no matter what religion, race or creed you are, you shouldn't be discriminated against.'

Asked if all his players would wear T-shirts supporting Kick It Out this weekend, Rodgers added: 'Yes. We obviously had our game with that (at home against Reading last weekend), and now it is Everton's game this weekend. But we will support that.'

Nicklas Bendtner banned from driving

Bendtner banned from driving after Sunderland striker admits speeding at over 100mph

Sunderland striker Nicklas Bendtner was banned from driving for 56 days and fined 660 after admitting speeding at almost 104mph in his Porsche.

Bendtner was late for a flight from Newcastle Airport when he was caught by a Northumbria Police traffic officer on the A696 dual carriageway, which has a 70mph limit, last December.

The Dane, who is on a season-long from Arsenal, did not appear before Newcastle magistrates for the hearing.

Man in the hat: Nicklas Bendtner watched Sunderland beat Arsenal on Saturday

Man in the hat: Nicklas Bendtner watched Sunderland beat Arsenal on Saturday

The court was told the 24-year-old was in Denmark for 'contractual obligations'.

He was deemed to not be absent from court because he was legally represented at the hearing.

Sarah Robinson, prosecuting, said Bendtner was spotted driving his convertible Porsche 911 Turbo and he was measured to be driving at 103.6mph for 0.137miles at 10.53am on Saturday December 10.

Barry Warburton, defending, said: 'I understand he was going to Newcastle Airport, he was slightly late for a flight and unfortunately he speeded.

'It was a Saturday morning, there was very little traffic on the road and weather conditions were fine.'

Addressing the bench, he added: 'Not withstanding the fact he is in Denmark, he has been absolutely no trouble to anybody. In my respectful submission, your public duty can be discharged by treating him with leniency.'

Man in the mask: Bendtner's protection for his broken nose

Man in the mask: Bendtner's protection for his broken nose

The solicitor said his client had 'substantial' disposable income and could pay the fine immediately with a credit card.

Chairman of the bench Edward Wardrobe imposed a 56-day driving ban, and fined the footballer 660, plus 30 costs and a 15 victim surcharge.

No penalty points were added to the three Bendtner has on his licence.

In 2009, his father Thomas said his son was lucky to escape with only cuts and bruises after crashing his Aston Martin on the way to training.

A photograph of the written-off sports car showed it had been badly mangled.

Suspended: Bendtner has been hit with a 56-day driving ban

Suspended: Bendtner has been hit with a 56-day driving ban

He will appear before the same court in a week alongside Sunderland captain Lee Cattermole.

They were charged with criminal damage after a number of cars were attacked in Newcastle's Stowell Street in December.

Bendtner was engaged to Baroness Caroline Luel-Brockdorff, a wealthy member of the Danish royal family and the mother of his child. They split soon after the birth of their son in December 2010.

The self-confident striker is currently playing in a mask after suffering a broken nose.

It has been customised to include his initials, the '52' shirt number and the Danish flag.

Bendtner was ineligible to play for Sunderland in their win against Arsenal in the FA Cup on Saturday.

Manchester City deserved a penalty and Raul Meireles should have been sent off – Graham Poll

Man City deserved a penalty and Meireles was fortunate to stay on the pitch

Manchester City should have been awarded a penalty when David Silva was clearly tripped by Jose Bosingwa midway through the first half.

Silva”s trickery fooled the Portuguese defender and the contact was clear.

Over he goes: Silva deserved a penalty after fooling Boswinga with his trickery

Over he goes: Silva deserved a penalty after fooling Boswinga with his trickery

Back of the net: Meireles (right) scored but should have seen red for two bookable offences

Back of the net: Meireles (right) scored but should have seen red for two bookable offences

Mark Clattenburg had a good, unobstructed view but waved aside City”s appeals, perhaps unsure of the contact.

Chelsea also benefited from Clattenburg not seeing a poor Raul Meireles tackle on Silva which escaped an obvious yellow card.

Meireles was later cautioned for a reckless tackle on Pablo Zabaleta. However, Manchester City did not benefit from such leniency as two rash challenges from Gael Clichy on Daniel Sturridge both correctly resulted in yellow cards.

Barry Bonds trial: Prosecutors seeking prison sentence

Former baseball star Bonds could face prison over obstruction of doping probe

Slugger: Former big hitter Barry Bonds

Slugger: Former big hitter Barry Bonds

Federal prosecutors have asked a judge to send former baseball slugger Barry Bonds to prison.

In court documents filed late on Thursday, prosecutors objected to a recommendation by a federal probation officer that Bonds get only probation when he”s sentenced for obstruction of justice on December 16.

In the documents, prosecutors asked that Bonds be sentenced to 15 months in prison.

Bonds, 47, was convicted in April of obstructing a grand jury”s sports doping investigation with an evasive answer.

Prosecutors dropped three other counts charging Bonds with making false statements after the jury deadlocked on those charges.

They accused Bonds of lying to the grand jury when he denied knowingly taking performance-enhancing drugs and said he allowed only doctors to inject him.

Federal sentencing guidelines for conviction on the obstruction charge recommend a prison sentence between 15 and 21 months.

But Bonds” lawyers have cited an investigative report prepared by a federal probation officer for the judge that recommended a sentence of probation.

Defense lawyers said in a previous motion they disagreed, however, with the probation report”s recommendation that Bonds spend an unspecified time under “location monitoring”, a form of house arrest.

Awaiting sentencing: Bonds was convicted in April of obstructing a grand jury

Awaiting sentencing: Bonds will learn his punishment on December 16 after he was convicted in April of obstructing a grandjury”s sports doping investigation

In their motion, Bonds” lawyers said the probation department cited Bonds” “significant history of charitable, civic and prior good works” as a major reason for leniency.

The probation officer also noted that Bonds” conviction appears “to be an aberration when taken in context of his entire life”, according to the lawyers.

The lawyers said the probation officer recommended probation because other sports figures convicted of similar charges stemming from the same sports doping investigation avoided prison.

Juries convicted cyclist Tammy Thomas of perjury for testifying she never used steroids and former track coach Trevor Graham for lying to investigators about his involvement with a steroids dealer.

Both were sentenced to periods of house arrest, which is considered a form of probation.

Former professional football player Dana Stubblefield pleaded guilty to lying to investigators and was sentenced to probation.