Writer: Tim Stillman
Date:Monday April 21 2008
Gunners' wing wizard Aliaksandr Hleb could face a three match ban that could curtail his season, after appearing to bitch slap Graeme Murty during Saturday's 2-0 mauling of Reading. Though rumours that Hleb shouted, 'who's your Daddy, beatch?' in the immediate aftermath remain unsubstantiated.
Referee Peter Walton missed the incident in real time (and in true Arsene Wenger fashion, I also did not see it) but Hleb could be banned on trial by video. An F.A. Spokesman said, 'The first thing is to wait and see the referee's report but that is not necessarily the end of the matter.'
Steve Coppell called for Hleb to be punished retrospectively (nothing to do with the fact we are still to play their relegation rivals Sunderland), 'Hleb slapped him across the neck and it is clearly visible on the video. It is there to see,' Coppell said.
'I don't know how the procedure is at the Football Association. It seems some mystery man phones in and says 'have a look at the tape'.
'The whole process is unexplainable and arbitrary. Maybe someone in their front room somewhere will do something about it.'
I must confess, Coppell's cynicism towards the F.A. is quite amusing. The fact that nobody in the Premiership respects them or has any idea as to their procedures is quite telling. The in no way hypocritical Alan 'Elbows' Shearer waded into the argument, 'I think the F.A. need to look at that.' Stand by next week as El Hadji Diouf condemns footballers who spit and Myra Hindley expresses her support for the 'hug a hoodie' campaign.
Date:Monday April 21 2008
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