By Chris Wright
Shortly after announcing that they’ve seen fit to charge Ashley Cole with misconduct and bringing the game into disrepute over his errant thumbs and the resultant #BUNCHOFTWATTERY which prevailed thereafter, the FA have confirmed that no further action will be taken against the trio of Robin van Persie, Robert Huth or Cheick Tiote for straight-arming Yohan Cabaye, stamping on Luis Suarez’s ribcage and putting on a flamboyant display of dissenting amateur dramatics respectively.
You’d have good reason to question just how Cole has bought ‘the entire game’ into disrepute with his comment, rather than just himself and himself alone, but hey ho.
Van Persie was picked up by the cameras waving an elbow in the general direction of Cabaye’s face, with Alan Pardew kindly requesting that the FA charge the Dutch striker on the strength of a video review, though the FA themselves are having none of it.
Referee Howard Webb has apparently reviewed the incident and come to the conclusion that it wasn’t an act of violent conduct, so no retrospective action can be taken by the FA. Newcastle enforcer Tiote has also escaped a charge for stamping on Tom Cleverley’s leg during a challenge after Webb reviewed the relevant footage.
During the same game, Tiote got a little over-enamoured with one of the referee’s decisions and threw a truly effervescent tantrum…
No FA charge for that little peach either, and rightly so. It was more deserving of a Daytime Emmy.
So, lastly, we get to Huth, who clearly trod on Suarez’s torso – a little discretion obviously missed by Tony Pulis, who went on the warpath after the game over Suarez’s comedic flip-flopping then was conveniently called away from the post-match press conference before he could be addressed on the conduct of members of his own team.
In the grandest tradition of the lumpen, inarticulate centre-half and the fleet-footed, conniving striker; Huth and Suarez were at each other all afternoon, tit-for-tat, back and forth.
We could examine the intricacies of both, but there’s really no need. Neither were in the right. This isn’t a case of point scoring and who did what how many times. Both players acted shamefully (Huth’s stamp/Suarez’s dive and ) and both deserve to be retrospectively punished for their behaviour. The FA have missed a trick.