How Lucky That Refs And The FA Favour United
It's official now: no further action will be taken against Steven Taylor, the Newcastle defender who punched Ronaldo in the face then scythed down Michael Carrick from behind. Joke.
The reason? One joke organisation (The FA) acts according to another joke organisation's (FIFA) rules after a joke referee (Bennett) admits he never saw the incident.
Bennett reported that he gave a yellow card to Taylor for the challenge on Carrick and he did not see the defender hitting Ronaldo. Having watched the footage, the referee declared that he would have only given a yellow card. If a referee deems an offence worthy of only a yellow then no further action can be taken against the offender.
So he won't get an additional yellow card. Put aside the fact that by any sensible measure Taylor should have been shown a straight red for hitting Ronaldo. Put it aside and let's say it's only a yellow card. Well, a yellow card for this and for the lunge on Carrick - and it's a red, for two yellows picked up in five seconds' time.
Patrice Evra was banned for four games for something that's never been proved and happened after a game, not in a game, in front of the linesman. Roy Keane, if you remember, was banned for writing a book. Rio Ferdinand was banned for the same offence which had cost a Manchester City player only Ł2000 a few months earlier.
Did anyone think that it was only worthy of a yellow card when Scholes threw a punch towards Alonso at Anfield but never actually hit him? No, that was a straight red and a three-match ban.
It's so good, then, that the referees and the FA favour United and Fergie controls them, as Rafa suggested. Imagine what would happen otherwise, they might ban Ronaldo for the audacity of hitting Taylor's arm with his face.