Premier League

Referee Clattenburg in the clear

IN THE CLEAR
Referee Mark Clattenburg has been cleared of using inappropriate language towards John Obi...
Share This Story

   
 

LONDON

The Football Association will take no action against referee Mark Clattenburg over a complaint by Chelsea that he used a racist remark towards one of their players.

The FA have decided there is "no case to answer" over the allegation the referee said "shut up you monkey" to midfielder John Obi Mikel.

An FA statement also said the complaint by Mikel's team-mate Ramires was "made in good faith".

Clattenburg spoke of his relief and said the last few weeks had been "the most stressful of his life".

He said: "I am looking forward to putting this behind me and concentrating on refereeing in the Premier League and other competitions.

"I am extremely grateful for the invaluable support of my family, my Select Group colleagues, the management of Professional Game Match Officials Limited and our union Prospect. The messages of encouragement from those inside and outside of the game have helped me through the most stressful time of my professional life.

"To know you were innocent of something but that there was the opportunity for it to wreck your career was truly frightening.

"Racism has no place in football and this experience should not discourage those to speak out if they genuinely believe they are a victim of abuse. However, there are processes that should be adhered in order that any investigation can be carried out in a manner that is fair for all parties involved.

"I know first-hand the ramifications of allegations of this nature being placed into the public domain ahead of a formal process and investigation. I hope no referee has to go through this in the future."

The FA said the evidence had been considered by independent QC David Waters who ruled Ramires' claim was not supported by any other evidence and disputed by the other match officials.

An FA statement added: "Moreover it was contradicted by other witnesses and does not cross the evidential threshold required to bring a charge against Mark Clattenburg.

"Having considered Counsel's opinion, and in view of all the circumstances of the case, The FA does not believe that there is a case for Mr Clattenburg to answer.''

Meanwhile, Mikel has now been charged by the FA for using threatening words or behaviour - an alleged breach of FA Rule E3 - after going into the referees' changing room after the match in question - Chelsea's 3-2 defeat by Manchester United at Stamford Bridge on October 28.

An FA statement said; "It is alleged that in or around the Match Officials' changing room at the end of the fixture, Mikel used threatening and/or abusive and/or insulting words and/or behaviour.

"The player has until Friday 30 November 2012 to respond to the charge.''

Referees chief Mike Riley said they will look to record all match officials' conversations during games in the future.

Riley, general manager of PGMOL, said: ''We welcome the FA's announcement that Mark Clattenburg has no case to answer regarding the allegations made by Chelsea following their game against Manchester United. We would like to thank them for completing a thorough and efficient investigation in difficult circumstances.

"It is PGMOL's considered view that Mark is completely exonerated of the allegation and he will return to active duty shortly without any stain on his character or reputation. The verbal and visual facts do not support any of the allegations made against him. They make it clear that Mark did not use any inappropriate language towards any Chelsea player.

"Regrettably, Mark has had to endure four weeks that have brought massive disruption to his professional and personal life through no fault of his own. We are all relieved that this is now behind him and that he can return to doing something that he loves.

"To reduce the risk of an episode of this nature being repeated PGMOL will introduce recording of the referees' communication system on a private basis.''

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by

More than Sports on MSN