Manchester United Message Board
The media has made sure that the 'suits' at the FA felt incapable of doing anything but give him the max ban and fine otherwise they are frightened of looking soft.
I was going to say that I don't know any other walk of life where you can get fined GBP30k for telling the truth, but of course in our 'politically correct' world that isn't the case anymore.
It’s legitimate to ask is there a forum to take potential evidence of bias, or to question the current channels via the FA. However, think of this in a world outside football. If you feel you've been wronged is it right you should seek retribution? Yes. But is it appropriate to do that via a media trial?
Personally I don't think the ref is biased and that view is only being raised by Utd fans because you yourselves are biased. You may think I say that because you consider me an ABU, but that charge of being a biased fan cuts both ways. Fact is I have no love lost for Chelsea either (ask Robert) and would have preferred you both lost (but would have settled for a draw).
But bottom line if you or your manager thinks the actions of the ref were motivated by some bias, then this is a serious charge and needs to be investigated by looking at the ref’s complete track record, and understanding his motives. That, if its necessary, is a serious investigation, and not fodder for a post match interview which imo is a cheap shot or excuse at best, but potentially slanderous at worst.
Its this question of 'the line'. What does this mean?
Imagine a corruptible ref who takes a bung to give a penalty. If no-one is allowed to question this, how will it ever get detected?
We used to live in a fairly free society, however 'spin' has replaced truth, the Fergie incident is an example of punishment for expressing an opinion based on visual evidence. Referees make mistakes, this incident was about one who has consistently made dubious decisions in the same match 2 years running to the advantage of the same team. It raises a question. Is he incompetent, a homer, or not even-handed? If this question cannot be raised , not by the red-tops of the press, but by experienced practitioners, we are indeed in a world devoid of common-sense.
People have been put off from talking about football on the Chelsea board by you and your friends posting huge amounts of racist drivel.
I have nothing more to say to you as you are plainly trolling me. I am sure that anyone who isn't a troll who has read a few of my posts on this and other boards will realise that the statement "you have no interest whatsoever in Chelsea FC" is utterly ludicrous.
Jim, I’m trying to be objective in or to tell you why those other decisions by other refs are relevant. Go take a look at what the managers said after those games when they felt hard done by. These are comments made right after the game in the heat of the moment.
I think you'll find when managers were critical of the decisions there was no action by the FA, but if they crossed the line and had a go at the integrity of the ref himself, as Fergie did in this case on the case where he had a suspended suspension, they were punished.
Case in point, the penalty you got at OT against us in the FA cup. Dalglish called it a bad call: no punishment. Babel questioned Webb on Twitter and got a hefty fine.
There is a line, and if you can't see it I don't think anything anyone says can help you. But if you take a look at what other managers say when they are in the exact same position Fergie was in after the Chelsea match its clear that the line was crossed.
Not going to look for a back and forth on this one, but got to say Fergie had this coming. I was surprised it was 5 games, I was expecting 1 or 2 plus the 2 that were suspended, but to expect him not to get something is taking a blinkered view.
Bottom line is he crossed a line. I'm not sure if many of you on this board can't see that line, or just choose not to. Its one thing to speak the truth and call decisions bad, but quite another to go after the integrity of the ref himself.
Its one thing to say Luis should have been sent off, or Smalling did not commit a foul, and the calls were wrong. But Fergie called Atkins unfit to ref, and the other week he called the ref weak and biased. They are two very different things.
Many have said Fergie is being punished for telling the truth, but if that is true and he has any evidence that either ref should not be officiating, then he need to take that to the FA directly so it can be investigated. The game hinges on the ref being impartial, and if he's not it needs to be dealt in a serious way, and not by media trial, as steam being let off after a bad result, or as some kind of mind game to help sway decisions in the future.
- 2 Replies to dsteer_lfc_68
Your last paragraph is a good summary. The issue is one of evaluating the fairness of a referee. Fergie thought he wasn't fair with some important decisions in two matches against the same opposition on the same pitch. Personally I concur with that view, others may not. However if you cannot voice doubt about this issue, it is akin to living in a world described vividly by Wells. Referees are human beings, they are fallible, they make mistakes. The problem lies with the appointment of certain officials in certain matches and above all the blood-lust from the media, that is painted as 'protecting the game from falling into disrepute' but in reality is just a hunger for revenge on Fergie for past slights. One of the best examples of this at its most erudite is Partick Barclay who always pretends to be so intellectually superior, but slowly burns with a deep loathing of Fergie from the past, mainly because Fergie refuses to acknowledge his mental 'preening'.
The problem of being successful for so long in such a competitive atmosphere is that you collect a lot of enemies along the way. Fergie is abrasive and doesn't help himself in this regard, but would have to be a saint not to incur such wrath.
it amuses me when posters on here talk about Clough as someone who every looked up to, they mustn't have been around at the time. He made and kept enough enemies to last a lifetime. What changes perceptions is 'time'. Fergie can rest assured he will be remembered ( and fondly) long after most of his contemporaries are lost from memory.
Robert, you can keep doing this all week if you want, it doesn't deal with the issue. You are correct that Fergie commented on the fairness of the referee , he was correct to do so, his decisions were not even-handed, not this season or last. Other matches/refs etc have no bearing on this assessment. Fergie is penalised for saying what he , and many others, believe was an accurate reflection of events as they unfolded. Only the ref knows why he did what he did, as I have said before, either he is incompetent, a homer, or consciously acted in a non even handed manner.
Nothing you can write will change the validity of that assessment.
"The ref was either incompetent, a homer, or somewhat one-sided in his decisions at crucial points in both matches..."
...or the decisions were entirely reasonable.
"Arguments about other refs at other matches is completely irrelevant."
No, they aren't. There is a context to refereeing decisions in a particular match which is what refereeing decisions we see in other matches. There was nothing exceptional about the refereeing in the two matches apart from Fergie's rants about it afterwards.
" Fergie was being honest in his assessment"
I think you don't get it. He didn't say just "I think the penalty was wrong" - he implied that the referee was either biased or not good enough to referee such a match. That is overstepping the line, as a number of United fans have recognised.
Your comments about the media give the impression that you share the paranoia that is often exhibited by United fans and which Fergie supposedly encourages.
There is nothing in my post that 'rubbishes' your opinion. You are entitled to your opinion. So am I to mine. The ref was either incompetent, a homer, or somewhat one-sided in his decisions at crucial points in both matches. Arguments about other refs at other matches is completely irrelevant. On the specifics of the two matches at the Bridge, Fergie was being honest in his assessment. For that he gets fined and banned. Or rather he doesn't, he gets punished because the FA are incompetent and are more bothered about the media reaction than assessing the situation logically. The media, or large elements of it conveniently located in West and North London, are actually responsible for Fergie's ban. But then that seems to the way most life is run in the UK and many other places now. People are more interested in their 'media perception' than they are about integrity or ethics.
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