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Enough Is Enough

It has long been apparent to anybody with the cranial capacity equitable to that of a hamster that the English Football Association is constituted of a bunch of lazy, subservient gimps with a messiah complex. If you apply any sort of intelligent thinking to their decisions, you`ll see little more than mealy mouthed platitudes and media friendly bluster. The fact is and always has been that they take their cue from the media with Pavlovian quiescence, if they can get away with sitting on their fat arses and doing nothing, they will. For instance, they have always hid firmly behind the rulebook and pleaded indifference whenever a clearly horrific challenge receives a yellow card, "the referee dealt with it, our hands are tied." (I`m not even sure I understand the logic of this rule other than the fact that it precludes the F.A. from having to do any sort of work). Of course, when the media furore surrounding Ben Thatcher`s despicable elbow on Pedro Mendes reached fever pitch, the F.A. all of a sudden decided that that particular law was not so rigid after all. Thatcher was booked for the challenge, but after a sustained media campaign for the F.A. to do their job, they buckled and gave him a six match ban. Back in 1999 Patrick Vieira caused a media storm by spitting at Neil Ruddock and was given a six match suspension. In May 2000, Mustapha Hadji of Coventry was sent off for spitting at a Derby player and was awarded a one match ban. A fortnight after the mega hyped 'battle of Old Trafford` between Arsenal and United in September 2003, when four Arsenal players were banned for, errr, pushing. (Can anyone show me any footage of a blow being landed in that handbags melee?) West Brom and Fulham brawled, with Neil Clement and Andrew Cole landing a series of punches at one another. No extra punishment was meted out. The size of the media storm informs the severity of the punishment.

Today, the F.A. have had absolutely zero compunction about confirming all of the above. Last month, Sheffield United`s Chris Morgan hospitalized Barnsley`s Iain Hume with a pre meditated elbow to the head leaving Hume with a fractured skull and internal bleeding to the head. Since undergoing surgery, which left Hume with an unsightly scar which runs from ear to ear over the top of his cranium, the Barnsley striker had to spend another spell in hospital after complaining of severe dizziness and vomiting. Chris Morgan and Sheffield United are yet to even offer an apology. (Presumably for fear of admitting culpability and facing the accompanying legal music). Morgan was booked for the "challenge", which was precise and measured in my opinion. Hume had even complained to the referee several times in the build up to the incident of Morgan elbowing him persistently. Today, the Football Association have announced that no further action will be taken against Morgan, hiding behind that old familiar "the referee dealt with it at the time" fallacy. Strange how that rule didn`t apply when a comparable incident occurred in the media glare of the Premier League two seasons ago.

That the F.A. are prepared to admit that endangering the life of a fellow professional is only worthy of a yellow card is disgusting in itself. But what really rankles is that they are willing to all but admit that their interest in an incident is measured by the size of its media profile. In other words, the health and wellbeing of a Championship footballer is expendable. Not only does that set the moral compass twitching to somewhere close to 'despicable`, but it is yet another example of how the F.A. are in dereliction of duty. Hiding behind their supposed (selective) subservience to FIFA, they actually cannot be bothered to ensure that maliciously elbowing an opponent, to the point that his life is threatened, should be dealt with and punished appropriately. But because this incident attracted little media attention, it has not been worth dealing with in the way the Thatcher incident was. This incongruous approach to discipline and ensuring the health and safety of the players reveals two entirely unforgivable facets of this F.A. 1) That they are inauspiciously idle. Would they really have attracted a lot of ire from the media or their supposed puppet masters FIFA had they taken appropriate action against Morgan? After all, in the wake of Eduardo`s injury (obtained in a televised match by a player playing for the side leading the Premiership table) Sepp Blatter threatened to intervene and extend Martin Taylor`s ban. This is an act borne out of pure laziness. 2) They are 100% informed by the media and trial by media is a dangerous and gloriously undemocratic approach. In other words, the only time they`ll get off their fat arses to do anything, is when the media brews enough of a storm to compromise their image. They are more than prepared to be weak and lazy, so long as they are not caught in the act. Aristotle once said, "You become just by performing just actions, temperate by performing temperate actions and brave by performing brave actions." Chris Morgan and the F.A. fail on all three counts.LD.




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The Journalist

Writer: Tim Stillman Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Thursday November 27 2008

Time: 1:41PM

Your Comments

Head. Nail. Hitting sound.
ChaosTeaCup
Tim, nothing will ever be done about the dangerous challenges until some player looses his life.
Armory
Enough doesn't appear to be enough for the FA - That's the problem.
Rocky7
Player celebrates with crowd or by taking shirt off yellow card, player fractures fellow pros skull yellow card? Drogba was booked for the incident in relation to the coin throwing..... Mass hysteria on the back pages, incident shown from 15 angles. Where is the justice?
iceman10
If Iain Hume actually had been killed, what would the F.A. have done? On one hand, they couldn't seriously have hidden behind their non existent rule of "the referee dealt with it." But there again, it wouldn't have surprised me much if they had. I saw an interview with Hume on SSN last week and the scar is horrible, they had to cut his whole head open and if he's still experiencing nausea and vomiting, it's reasonable to assume that not only will his career be adversely affected, but so might his quality of life. I hope Hume sues Morgan and Sheffield United. How ironic that the Blades are currently squealing for loss of earnings from West Ham United, but refuse to apologise for nearly curtailing the life of a fellow pro, where are their lofty principles now?
Little Dutch
Here's a decent letter on it from F365 today, "The FA Don't Want Reasoned Opinion We could all phone the FA's 'Fans View Line' to complain about the non-punishment of Chris Morgan. The number is 020 7745 4999 but there isn't an e-mail option. I would've thought that it is easier to delete e-mail messages than phone messages but I suppose they might make a few quid out of the calls. I'm surprised it's not a premium rate number really, as with some of their decisions they could make a killing (here's hoping I haven't given them another idea). Anyway, there are lots of ways you can contact the FA - see here http://www.thefa.com/TheFA/ContactUs/Postings/2005/03/Contact_Us, but it's only the 'Fans View Line' that doesn't allow an email. I think that this is because they don't want reasoned debate and they can also screen out lots of messages out that are 'offensive', which is probably handy for them as once you've made the call it is physically impossible in stopping yourself calling Mr unaccountable FA man anything other than an unrepeatable. How many fans who are angry and mystified by the latest FA outrage can really muster a coherent argument in a phone call? This must help our ridiculous governing body's probable assumption that we're all stupid, but how many top journalists like Martin Samuel of the Times can write their columns in one go on a dictaphone? Keep Trev, sack the rest, until they start making an effort to engage in common sense - and the footballing public in general. Dave (tried phoning them but fluffed my lines) Atherton
Little Dutch
The dispicable lack of action from the FA and sheer unadulterated laziness in dealing with that s***bag Morgan is just the icing on the cake. Don't forget they are still technically an amateur organisation running a professional game. The blatent hypocrasy shown when dealing with Viera and Hadji (name?) of Coventry sums up their inability and idleness to a tea! LD you hit the nail squarely there old chap. How long before clubs stop appealing to the giverning body and actually take the opposing team into the law courts? If they show this level of inaction in the near future this will become the norm.
LondonGooner
Good article! When Aliadiere gave whoever it was (I don't remember) a little slap he received a 3(?) match ban which was increased to 4(?) on appeal. There is an enormous inconsistency in the refereeing at football matches and in the attitude of the FA. I think you said it all.
norfolk dumpling
Btw, who is the person "LD" writing all these articles?
nevidimka
Little Dutch
Tom14
Morgan has plenty of previous. As Barnsley have not prevented Sheff Utd trying to have the issue addressed at the Court of Arbitration and are planning legal proceedings, a U turn is very much in the wind from the FA
Kernowboy71
Top piece. At this rate this will fast become a matter of life and death. Seriously LD, can you print this out and send it to the FA please - and enclose the Hume scar pics? Cheers. I know a lady who used to work for the FA and what you said about the work ethic and mentality within the 'governing' body is exactly like that. And haha I just went into the Disciplinary Latest section of the FA website, quite funny to read - that's the sort of work they do really: http://www.thefa.com/TheFA/Disciplinary/NewsAndFeatures/Postings/2004/08/DisciplinaryLatest.htm
GoonerLou
IC, thanks. great job Little Dutch. Pls send this article to the FA along with a little threat that you'd send this to the media and get support to make the media wreak havoc on the FA if they don't do anything about it.
nevidimka
The FA don't give you the opportunity to write to them, only to phone them and leave a voice message. So I'd have to verbalise this whole piece into an answerphone. Kangaroo Court run on loose principles.
Little Dutch
joe kinnear has today been charged by the FA for calling a ref mickey mouse (no joke).
iceman10
does anyone know how to set up an online petition against this ruling? I don't know a football fan that wouldn't sign it.
iceman10
Crack someone's skull= no problem. Compare referee tomuch loved Disney character= F.A. charge. Wow.
Little Dutch
Er apart from charging Joe Kinnear, the FA have also been too busy fining this guy for a goal celebration to do anything about Hume's fractured skull apparently: http://www.guardian.co.uk/football
GoonerLou
The FA is a complete joke. Nothing more to it. What do these people spend all day doing???
ArsenalRob
For the first time I felt compelled to take action. I called the number you've posted Tim and somehow refrained from using abusive language in the hope that my view will not be deleted at the first hurdle. Attempted to profess my indignation that this could be called a football matter when it was quite clearly a criminal matter involving GBH. Uttered my embarrassment that these people were running the football in this country and that people wondered why there were so few english players coming through with natural ability when we advocate "football" such as that evidenced by Chris Morgan. The whole time I wanted to get abusive and couldn't help but be reminded how angry I had been when similar actions were taken following Eduardo's injury but hoping at the time that things would change. I'm genuinely shocked and embarrassed they haven't.
Jason10
im really fearful that armory is right...it will take an event of magnanimous proportion where the whole world is looking and making noise before they take these matters seriously
anonymous
Just ridiculous !! Hume has actually been re-admitted to hospital, and the FA simply refuse to do anything about it. The media needs to put pressure on the FA in this case, even though its not the best way to do things.
prits
The FA took action on Ben Thatcher after the referee saw the incident and Mendes got knocked out, Hume could of died there and then on the pitch and the ref did his usual incompetent best and the FA have let every football fan and player in the country down. I hope Barnsley sue the fat f***ing arses off Sheff Utd and that scab Morgan and ignore any belated attempt from the FA to see football clubs further usurp their power or lack of it! They deserve nothing more than a hefty kick in the nuts!
LondonGooner
Great Article. The FA are total clowns, i cannot understand how, in the year 2008 can taking your shirt off in celebration after scoring a goal or running to your own fans and getting a few hugs - be given the same punishment as what Chris Morgan performing GBH on a player and nearly killing him. Then even more shocking is hiding behind the bs of "he was booked therefore theres nothing we could do" sham. The fact of the matter is Barnsley are just too small a team for the FA to do something about, like Sheff Utd getting relegated by Carlos Tevez, and it sucks.
HuddersfieldYiddo
One thing all football fans can agree with, even opposing supporters.
LondonGooner
Morgan is a 24 carat ********.
Moorish
Why would the FA punish Morgan further? Isn't he the epitome of 'English Steel'? Ice hockey in Canada faced a similar situation. The game used to be one half art, one half thuggery (the old chestnut was 'I went to the fights and a hockey game broke out'). Then in 1972 the first summit series between NHL players (90% Canadian at the time) and the Russians- we narrowly won using thuggery but they showed us how beautiful the game could be. It took a few decades, but now the emphasis is on skill, not brawn, and it's a better game to watch. Of course the downside is that while the old-school Canadians relied on intimidation and brawn, the Europeans introduced diving and other forms of cheating. Sound familiar?
elbondo
i see you forgot to mention how nothing was done when adeybuywore headbutted nick bendtner........its always got to be about eduardo give it a break you tossers
chinaman123
Chinaman, you have the intelligence of a spunk bubble.
Little Dutch
You're skull's condition is already worse than Hume's chinaman, and you haven't been hit by an elbow on your head.
entropy13
Chinaman if you're literate, Eduardo's name only got mentioned twice in the article and comments combined when everyone's focus was on Morgan's foul on Hume. 'It's always go to be about Eduardo'?! Just as much it's about Ade and Bendtner? You're moving away from the issue and you know it. If you don't like Entrophy said there's something wrong with your skull.
GoonerLou
What a great article. The shameful FA are reduced to glorified adminstrators with no ideology, teeth, or conviction. But what are we supposed to expect from these people who see it as a gravy train - because that's what it really is. They have plenty of time for in-house politics and fun in the broom cupboard. What qualifications do you need to go and work there exactly apart from being part of the old boys network? They won't rock the boat, so duck out of difficult decisions. This is the same sloping-shoulder organisation that has dithered and still dithers about the need for a national academy! They are not running the sport... they ADMINISTER the leagues/cups and ADMINISTER the fat TV cheques out to the clubs... that's not hard is it? They are meant to properly ADMINISTER the rules too but like the article says, they won't.... This shambles will continue and it would take some sort of real crisis to review their function in the modern game - like somebody getting killed on a pitch, or maybe TV money drying up in a couple of years. I like Iceman's petition idea but I can just see them facing it off with the usual bland statements that insult the intelligence of fans everywhere.
Andy-bayor
 

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