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Millers

Guilty until proved innocent

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Due to the sensitive nature of this post I am not going to name individuals or the particular game the incident took place in - read into it what you will but I thought I'd bring this to your attention as its a system that is wrong and outdated. If anyone does have knowledge of the event I'd appreciate it if you didn't mention names.

A number of weeks ago we (Cove) were trailing in what was at the time a fairly even contest. We had been on the receiving end of a number of contentious refereeing decisions but the referee performance is not the issue here. Shortly before half-time we had a player given a 2nd yellow card for dissent...and then it happened. 

Feeling it was unjustified the player the player first walked away before losing his head and returning ranting and raving at the referee. Seeing he had lost it a number of my players got to him and stopped him going any further - by which point he was close to the ref and hurling abuse in his direction - some of it pretty nasty. Regardless of the refs performance or his decision to send off the player his reaction was out of order and cannot be defended. After a short while the player left the pitch but again under protest. We immediately sent a member of staff around to prevent any further breach of the peace and were successful in calming the player down - to the point where he went in to apologise to the ref at half time. 

Regardless of the decision to send off the player his behaviour was very poor and we expected it to be in the match report - I have seen similar incidents throughout my time in the CCL but never in a team I have played for/managed. Without knowing the process I wouldn't have been surprised if a further charge on top of the ban had been issued as it wasn't on. Given the player had been in to see the ref what came next in the report was a complete surprise.

Within a few days the report had come through and said that the player had been suspended indefinitely on a charge of assault of a referee - the report had stated the player had used to his head against the referee. This had come as a major shock to everyone involved at the club who had witnessed the incident and also those of the opposing team. We had no idea where this had come from. 

The incident happened late November/early December and has only now been cleared up. The hearing was last week, the referee did not attend the hearing and nor did his assistants on the day (both assistants I saw day before and know by name, both knew nothing of the hearing, of the incident and it had not been mentioned to them both before and after the event). We sat in the hearing and heard the evidence before and against - one sentence of incriminating evidence on a match report against 5 witness statements, 3 witnesses contradicting that fact. The player was found not guilty of assault but was given a further 4 matches (later reduced to 2) on top of the 6/7/8 games missed. 

We are very relieved for the player as he was facing a hefty ban should he have been found guilty. I have been informed lifetime-182 days could be reasonable for such a serious offence. We came away happy knowing that he would be available for selection within a matter of weeks but this whole experience has left a very sour taste in my mouth and a lot of questions unanswered. 

How can something like this get so far and where is the protection for the player. Whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty. I understand it is a very serious matter and I will fully stick up for referees, if they are assaulted then heavy punishments must be dished out. The verbal abuse of some officials I have witnessed alone is quite shocking in this league and the FA (even local) must act in a swifter manner in any such incidences. This whole situation could have been avoided or concluded a lot earlier if the proper intelligence gathering had been done within the first few days of the incident. I am bitter that an incident no one else saw or knew nothing about on the day has resulted in the player being banned for so long! I am bitter that the player went through what he went through in the build up to the hearing and I am bitter that the player received further punishment after being found not guilty. I understand that refs need protection but an investigation like this shouldnt take as long as it did - especially in the circumstances of such little evidence.

Take this last statement as you will. If abuse is hurled at you would you try to find a way to get back at that person? A statement has been made by one individual - a statement that has been found to be false or unproven yet that individual has nothing to answer for. If such an incident did take place why was it not brought up to anyone on the day? Why would you not inform your colleagues at half-time - surely it is a big talking point!! Why did neither set of players discuss it after? Why not inform our officials at the actions of the player? I believe the answer to be obvious. If any of my players were guilty of such an offence I'd sack them - end of. Before defending the player I made absolutely sure it never happened and got 3/4 individual reports before commencing with the appeal. Its not a case of a club protecting a player dispute his guilt - its a club in shock that this could have been alleged. If the club had not contacted witnesses before the hearing I wonder what the outcome would have been - one mans word against another. I am in utter disbelief that one sentence can have such connotations! 

 

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Millers,

I am still dealing with an incident from April last year that is yet to be cleared up by the Fa. I am due at a hearing before the end of February so that evidence can finally be heard from all parties. I must be careful of what I say on here so will leave this incident where it is for now.

 

On a separate incident when I was Cove captain a few years back, a similar thing happened to me when being sent off. I was not aware the referee would put in his match report a bunch of stuff that just DID NOT HAPPEN, and when the report was received by the club I wanted to appeal to the Fa the inaccurate details in the report but unfortunately due to the lateness of the County Fa and Cove Fc receiving the report from the referee, it only gave me 1 day to lodge my appeal and therefore no time to retrieve witness statements. I was not appealing the sending off as i accepted the referees opinion at the time, but the report stated that I had practically assaulted the player and then verbally abused him while being treated which was so far from the truth, I felt the referee had abused his position to worsen the punishment, and purposely left me no time whatsoever to lodge an appeal.

As it was a reserve game due to the firsts match called off, I ended up missing seven 1st team matches and if it hadnt have been for myself taking it further through the Fa HQ and the media, I would have ended up missing 12 matches instead of 7.

 

I am sympathetic with you as there really is no player protection in these incidents and the Fa need to act quicker on dealing with situations like this. 

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Officials are becoming above the law! And because of the protection they receive from the FA will continue to do so!

The only way to protect your club and it's players is to video every game that you are involved in. At least you have some protection from the over indulged bureaucrats that are supposed to impartially administer the game!!!

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I remember a good few years ago now, when managing, I appealed something with Surrey FA. I won, got found not guilty but I'm sure I still had to pay the fine imposed on me, go figure!!

 

I think something similar happened to one of Slough's players this season after being red carded but on video evidence they appealed, decision overruled but fine still stood........I'm sure Bakes/Unders can confirm.

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I remember playing at cove a while back and being sent off for apparent foul and abusive language. I appealed with witness statements, ref didn't bother showing up. Found not guilty but still had to pay the fine!!

 

I wonder if refs are briefed before, especially when solid witness account differ from his report and he knows what the outcome would be so doesn't show up to save face!!

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I never got sent off cookie!!!!!!!!

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No Johnno,Refs are not warned of the evidence given by others.They know they have lied in their report,so a NO show saves them from embarassment.The thing that really annoys me,is you never ever get a written apology from the F.A CONCERNED when the written evidence given is proved to be false.My classic was when my grandson was alledgely sent off,when he never even played in the game.The Refs report clearly stated that the Player concerned was black.Even after written evidence stating he was White,and had played for Surrey F.A Rep sides,that could be checked,he was found guilty in his absence.A hefty fine was imposed,plus a 5 match ban,with No Appeal.Funny thing was though that the threat of going to the National Papers,on the grounds of Racial discrimination against him,had Ray Ward on the phone within 2 hours,saying they had reviewed the case and no further action would be taken against him.No Apology though.The officials should be named and shamed in the above case,just to pre warn other Clubs.

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We had a player banned for life for an apparent head butt on a referee during a 5 a side tournament.

 

The ref didn't send the player off during the game and we had over 40 witness statements confirming nothing happened.

 

As expected the Hants FA found the player guilty,despite no supporting evidence. They even stated they operate their own laws and do not take into account the laws of the country (the police dismissed the claim due to the evidence supporting nothing happened).

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Whilst I'm not disputing the evidence here, (I had a similar situation happen to me personally in Sunday League twenty years ago where the offence was exaggerated to make it seem justified) we must remember one thing.

 

This is a forum and the referee, whoever it is, has not and probably will not put his side of the story here. As a result, people shouldn't be passing judgements here either.

 

Certainly I do agree that these hearings should be dealt with quicker and also that in the event that the report is fabricated, it would make the referee look very bad for him if it was proven to be made up, so you can understand why the FAs would take the referees view as gospel.

 

Maybe the player and ref had a "history". Maybe not. Either way, I think people at Cove were really silly letting the guy speak with the referee so soon after the incident. That is irresponsible and you could maybe understand why a referee would feel threatened in such a case. 

 

As for the hearing, let's close the book on this and move on before this turns into a ref bashing forum with no evidence.

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What do our 'referee' posters think on this matter ?

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I enjoyed reading Millers post and I cannot comment on the actual event as I wasnt there or party to it but I have no reason to doubt what Millers says.  What i knew was out would come a load of "this happened to me and blah blah blah"

 

In my opinion if a referee does not attend a hearing it should be thrown out and the referee should be suspended.  If it is proved a referee lied then again I think a referee should be suspended.  Good luck proving that though just because someone got all their mates to give witness statements.

 

I also think that if a referee alledges something that is a criminal action then the referees report should be backed up with a crime number and also if it is assault they are claiming the game should be immedaitely abandoned.

 

I also enjoy the accusations that are banded around at this time about officials getting their stories straight with each other.  Because no player has ever done anything like that when appealing now have they ?

 

I once sent a player off for Serious Foul Play.  The guy did it no question and I actually sent the other player involved as he tried to punch the player who made the tackle !!  It was appealed.  Within 30 seconds of the appeal the manager of the side actually got something factually incorrect and admitted it.  One of the questions from the panel was "The player alledges no contact was made did any players react to the tackle"  I clearly replied about the other player swinging a punch at him in retaliation.  Incidentally the punch didnt make contact !!  The case was found in favour of the player.  And I had travelled from Camberley to Northfleet in Kent on a Weds night to basically be called a liar by the commission.  So dont give me all this no protection for the players bollocks because it works both ways guys whether you like it or not. 

 

I dont doubt that these reports above are true but in 24 hours a busy forum has come out with 5 incidents covering a number of years.  Not bad for a league that has 462 league fixtures in its Premier Division alone.  I dont think we do too bad now do we.

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I remember a good few years ago now, when managing, I appealed something with Surrey FA. I won, got found not guilty but I'm sure I still had to pay the fine imposed on me, go figure!!

 

I think something similar happened to one of Slough's players this season after being red carded but on video evidence they appealed, decision overruled but fine still stood........I'm sure Bakes/Unders can confirm.

 

Yes Ryan Lake was sent off for us for a "professional foul" which nobody appealed as Lakey had clearly won the ball, and even the ref played on for 10 seconds before pulling the game back as linesman was flagging.

 

Luckily our games are filmed, and the video evidence was so concrete that the red card decision was an embarrassment for the 2 officials involved, and overturned, however as stated we were fined and got the penalty points still (go figure).

 

Problem we had was for the first time in my management career I and Jon went into the officials room 50 minutes after the game with ref 2 assistants (one who had been very good on the night) assessor and our chairman (as on the night there must have been 5 extremely contentious decisions which changed the course of the game, all of which were confirmed by video).

 

We sat there and had to listen for 15 minutes how the ref and assistants got everything spot on in the game from the assessor, when everyone in the ground had been puzzled beyond belief at the performances, and these are the guys that help refs push on up the ladder.

 

I had said after the game that I would like to give them my e mail address, and that we would send them the full DVD and if they had got the big decisions wrong like we thought at the time they had, for them just to acknowledge it, and vice versa I would contact them and apologise if I was wrong.

 

I never heard a thing... and for that reason alone is why I struggle with the whole respect campaign (and that is from someone who had an excellent disciplinary record as a player, and never even been cautioned as a manager).

 

This was the decision that got overturned (I would say that one of our lads should have been sent off for foul and abusive language after the red, but I think watching that you can see the frustration in our team, especially as this was the 3rd poor decision in the space of about 10 minutes, and was a game that if we had won we would have gone top)

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BwgiPqFp47c

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Krooner you miss the point entirely,if a player gets found guilty by the Commission they are fined and banned,plus lose their Appeal Money.If a Ref tells Lies,and cannot be arsed to attend a hearing,the main reason being for them not going in my opinion,is there is no Money in it for them.They do not incur a Fine or a ban for their actions which they should.3 officials at the South Kilburn v Warlingham game last year,could not even get the Club right of the Player they said had echanged blows with his own Manager,but they got the Managers Club right on the form.Collusion at its best.The London F.A.,the F.A, DID NOT EVEN HAVE THE DECENCY TO REPLY,TO A 2 PAGE LETTER.The CCL took no action against  the Manager,which in turn led to the Eversley v South Kilburn incident,and their fixtures being suspended for 3 weeks.Whilst an investigation was held,I have asked 3 times on this very Forum,what was the outcome of their investigation,has Mick Jennings  been banned LAZURUS?

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I am not sure if things have changed but it used to be the case that officials would inform the County FA of any dates that they were unavailable in order to ensure their attendance.

 

I have been to commisions where players have failed to turn up and also once went to one when the referee failed to turn up.

 

In my opinion if a commision is taking place without officials (due to their non arrival) then the player should have no case to answer and that should be the end of things ... no fine and no suspension. 

If the official(s) do not provide an adequate reason for their non arrival then they should be dealt with by the FA or County FA and suspended for a suitable period ... again, just my opinion

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Krooner you miss the point entirely,if a player gets found guilty by the Commission they are fined and banned,plus lose their Appeal Money.If a Ref tells Lies,and cannot be arsed to attend a hearing,the main reason being for them not going in my opinion,is there is no Money in it for them.They do not incur a Fine or a ban for their actions which they should.3 officials at the South Kilburn v Warlingham game last year,could not even get the Club right of the Player they said had echanged blows with his own Manager,but they got the Managers Club right on the form.Collusion at its best.The London F.A.,the F.A, DID NOT EVEN HAVE THE DECENCY TO REPLY,TO A 2 PAGE LETTER.The CCL took no action against  the Manager,which in turn led to the Eversley v South Kilburn incident,and their fixtures being suspended for 3 weeks.Whilst an investigation was held,I have asked 3 times on this very Forum,what was the outcome of their investigation,has Mick Jennings  been banned LAZURUS?

sorry smudge your opening line confuses me.  I have stated above that IMO if a referee fails to show up he should get a ban.  Was that not clear enough for you ?

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I always thought that if you appealed your ban was on hold till after the appeal? It definitely used to work that way anyway as I once appealed the most blatant red card for foul and abusive language to play in a cup final.

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So Kroons and Footy Mad,why is this not the case already.Have any Officials been stood down or Fined ever for misleading the F.A.,COMMISSIONS.Or non attendance.

Edited by Smudge

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That is a question you would have to direct to the relevant authorities.

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I always thought that if you appealed your ban was on hold till after the appeal? It definitely used to work that way anyway as I once appealed the most blatant red card for foul and abusive language to play in a cup final.

 

The reason why quite a lot of appeals used to happen

 

In the case of an assault (or alleged assault) on a match official the player would be immediately suspended once the case was reported to the County FA

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I enjoyed reading Millers post and I cannot comment on the actual event as I wasnt there or party to it but I have no reason to doubt what Millers says.  What i knew was out would come a load of "this happened to me and blah blah blah"

 

In my opinion if a referee does not attend a hearing it should be thrown out and the referee should be suspended.  If it is proved a referee lied then again I think a referee should be suspended.  Good luck proving that though just because someone got all their mates to give witness statements.

 

I also think that if a referee alledges something that is a criminal action then the referees report should be backed up with a crime number and also if it is assault they are claiming the game should be immedaitely abandoned.

 

I also enjoy the accusations that are banded around at this time about officials getting their stories straight with each other.  Because no player has ever done anything like that when appealing now have they ?

 

I once sent a player off for Serious Foul Play.  The guy did it no question and I actually sent the other player involved as he tried to punch the player who made the tackle !!  It was appealed.  Within 30 seconds of the appeal the manager of the side actually got something factually incorrect and admitted it.  One of the questions from the panel was "The player alledges no contact was made did any players react to the tackle"  I clearly replied about the other player swinging a punch at him in retaliation.  Incidentally the punch didnt make contact !!  The case was found in favour of the player.  And I had travelled from Camberley to Northfleet in Kent on a Weds night to basically be called a liar by the commission.  So dont give me all this no protection for the players bollocks because it works both ways guys whether you like it or not. 

 

I dont doubt that these reports above are true but in 24 hours a busy forum has come out with 5 incidents covering a number of years.  Not bad for a league that has 462 league fixtures in its Premier Division alone.  I dont think we do too bad now do we.

 

Tucks1 still has a lot to answer for eh Krooner?  ;)

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Jennings was banned by the CCL but London FA stepped in and said you can't do that we will deal with it and as usual appear to have let him off the hook

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