Ah. Ben Thatcher. A misunderstood genius or absolute cock? It’s the latter isn’t it? Well, We all know about Thatcher’s assault on Mendes and his elbow on a certain son of a Man Citeh legend has reared its head again. Oh, not to mention the Chinese player who suffered a punctured lung after meeting the Welsh
quarterback full back.
Well, Thatcher’s future looks even grimmer after Jackburn Rovers’ Ralph Welch was left with a fractured jaw (pictured bottom left) which needed a metal plate inserting.
Ralph said to the News Of The World "I have no doubt Ben Thatcher set out to hurt me. He knew exactly what he was doing. He has done it before and he will do it again. It’s almost like his trademark. It seems when you step over the white line there is no law. I didn’t want to rock the boat at the time because I was hoping to build a career. I think the authorities just thought it was a reserve game, I’m not a high-profile player and it would go away.
He continued "When I saw what Thatcher did to Mendes I thought he would
probably get away with it because it was the same as he did to me. It
looks like you can do what you want and all that happens is
you might get fined or receive a little ban. No one thinks about the
police getting involved."
Thatcher was given a two-match ban for his elbow on Summerbee. He
faces an FA disciplinary hearing on September 12, when he is likely to
receive another six-game ban on top of his club punishment (match bans and a Â£120,000 fine).
Police are also investigating the Mendes incident. But Welch
adds: "At the time of my injury I didn’t think about getting the police
involved. I thought the FA would deal with it.
"Now I have decided to take action because Thatcher has shown with Mendes and Summerbee that he knows what he is doing. I felt I had to report it. Lancashire police told me to go in
person to my local police station in Liverpool, so that’s what I have
done. I needed surgery on my face. Doctors had to operate through
the inside of my gum and now I have a hole in my tooth where they went
"After the operation at Blackburn Royal Infirmary I had to take four different types of drugs to ease the pain. Welch told the newspaper "I had a fortnight off and then went to the Blackburn training ground to collect a few things. People at the club saw me but just took the mickey, calling me Elephant Man.
"My dad arranged a meeting with Blackburn and said we wanted to
report the incident. But Blackburn didn’t want to report the attack."
Welch was then told his contract would not be renewed since his injury would keep him out for the rest of the season. (Insult to injury eh?) However, Blackburn agreed to pay up his contract in full and he was released
Welch added "As a young professional, I didn’t want to get a bad name by suing another professional, but I felt I had to write to the FA and asked them to look at it. I even sent them the DVD which showed the challenge. The FA wrote back and told me that as the incident had been
dealt with at the time by the referee (he actually awarded a free-kick
against Welch) they could do nothing about it."