News today that the English FA are looking to change the rules that they said prevented them from charging Wigan Athletic’s Callum McManaman, for his horrific tackle on Newcastle United’s Massadio Haidara last Sunday.
Massadio Haidara tackle by McManaman went unpunished
McManaman’s tackle was one of the worst we’ve seen, as his boot goes straight into the knee of the Newcastle left back – but amazingly we learned last week that Massadio is not badly injured and suffered no ligament damage, and he could be playing again in two weeks.
The Frenchman was lucky as the knee-cap popped out, but then popped back in again – which led to tremendous pain and swelling but no serious damage other than that.
The news is that the FA will discus the issue further with the Premier League, Football League, Professional Footballers Association, League Managers Association and the match officials’ body, PGMOL – at the end of the season – and see if the rule should be changed.
The rather murky rule says that if an official sees the tackle or incident, and takes no action, then the FA cannot then step in after the game and retroactive action.
But the clear video evidence of the McManaman tackle, suggests this rule is foolish – and of course it is.
We think the FA have been stunned by the negative reaction coming from all sides, after they failed to do anything at all for what was a very dangerous tackle and could even have ended Massadio’s career.
And Premier League Chief Executive Richard Scudamore claimed that McManaman could have been charged under the present rule – which the FA have disputed – but let’s face it – to do nothing after such a tackle like that is just not right – it’s not common sense.
The consensus after the game was that the 21-year-old midfielder should have received a straight red card and a three-match ban – but he didn’t and there went the 3 points for Newcastle.
Mark Halsey is reported to have said in his match report of the game, that not only did he not see the McManaman tackle, but if he had seen it he would have given the Wigan player a straight red card.
And the FA still took no action – amazing.
We’ve always thought the FA hide behind their own rules in difficult cases where courage is required – and this is no exception – but the criticism has been so great that they have now been forced to review their own rules – and will almost certainly need to change them.
And the petition launched by reader Anthony Knowles has over 2500 signatures already – so here’s your chance to sign up and Anthony will ensure the FA gets the petition.
You can also reach Ed at firstname.lastname@example.org