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Monday Kickoff: Rooney escapes ban, Twente faces fan abuse probe, and more



Wayne Rooney will not face disciplinary action over an elbow he threw against Wigan Athletic and will be available for Manchester United in crucial Premier League fixtures against Chelsea and Liverpool.

In the ninth minute of United's 4-0 win  at the DW Stadium on Saturday, Rooney was seen elbowing James McCarthy in the back of the head. Referee Mark Clattenburg awarded a free kick and a warning to Rooney. The FA confirmed that Clattenburg, after seeing a television replay, thinks he administered the correct decision and therefore no retrospective action can be taken.

If Rooney had been charged with violent conduct, the 25-year-old striker would have been received a three-match ban.

Here are some more stories to kick off your Monday:


Dutch powerhouse FC Twente could face ramifications after its game against AZ Alkmaar was halted due to fan abuse of official Ruud Bossen. The match had to be halted for 15 minutes and the players led off the pitch after fans shouted offensive chants at the referee. Twente now sits three points behind PSV Eindhoven in the race for the Dutch title.


Chelsea has confirmed that it will investigate an incident that supposedly involved Ashley Cole accidentally shooting an intern with an air gun at the club’s training facility. According to The News of the World, the defender was playing with a .22 air gun and was unaware it was loaded. When the gun discharged a lead pellet struck 21-year-old Tom Cowan in the backside and required attention from Chelsea’s medical staff. British police said they would wait to study the newspaper’s report before deciding whether or not they would pursue legal action.


One of the ugliest periods in South American soccer drew to a close yesterday when a Brazilian judge ruled that the Brazilian FA and a former referee must pay $96 million in damages after pleading guilty to match fixing. Referee Pereira de Carvalho’s involvement in the scandal led to 11 matches being replayed in the 2005 domestic league. It is not clear how the fine will be divided and the Brazilian FA has confirmed it will appeal the ruling.


Everton striker Louis Saha walked away unscathed after crashing his Ferrari late last night in Cheshire, England. The 32-year-old Frenchman lost control of the vehicle and crashed in to a fence but did not need hospital treatment. No other vehicles were involved and police say they are looking into the incident.


What do you think of today's stories? Should Rooney have been suspended? How harsh a punishment should Twente receive? What about Ashley Cole?

Share your thoughts below


  1. And, third — there’s no such thing as Success Breads…as far as I know.

    For what it’s worth a typo is short for typographical error, not a grammatical/vocabulary error.

  2. documented according to who??? name a specific game, i’ve seen 99% of uniteds matches over the last decade or so…i’ve heard the complaints and i disagree. Refs add time at their discretion….i remember a game last season ppl. got really pissed but when you add up time added for injuries and goals it was perfectly legit. Just sour grapes coming from united haters.

    You say its a fact but thats so far from the truth, no one would stand for it if refs blatantly cheated…United do tend to get some calls go their way, but the bigger teams that win always have and always will. But i understand that if you watch a team you hate you tend to think the call should go the other way, the difference between me and you though is i don’t whine about it and make excuses…subjectivity is part of footie i find beautiful.

  3. Is it 96 million American dollars or Brazilian reais? If it is Brazilian money its quite a bit less, but still seems pretty excessive.

  4. Phil:

    I’m surprised the police got involved at all. However, watching the replay and after learning that the FA would not sanction Rooney, they decided to at least consider a police investigation.

  5. The problem of excessive extra time is rampant in the EPL (and perhaps other leagues in Europe, but I don’t watch them enough to comment), and is not specific to United.

  6. So how did united lose to wolves? Yeah exactly so don’t say nothing. If you want to talk about corrupt refs go to Spain. There’s one of the most corrupt refs in the world.

  7. First off, put down the thesaurus.

    Second off, the responses to you confirm nothing of the sort. Your comment was so inaccurate that it prompted people to lash out at you.

    Come back from la-la land.

  8. Have you ever seen the documentation on how United is given extra stoppage time when needed?

    It is well documented that the officials actually DO cheat for United when it comes to stoppage time.

    That isn’t a conspiracy, it is a fact.

  9. i think the ref lacked courage. i’m a United fan and i thought Rooney was surely getting sent off…gotta think the upcoming match at the bridge played a role in the his decision. As for the topic of refs favoring United, i think ppl see what they want to see. drop the conspiracy theories already…

  10. HA! I take it back — after checking out the story in The Guardian, it seems Man U. players have a history of escaping suspensions, both in the EPL and the Champions League. Certainly makes you wonder…

  11. The further incidents of hate in response to my mere, simple posting is further evidence of my original proposition.

    And apologies for my typo on a blog, in the comments no less. Such a sin, it seems that even Mr. Fischy had to read my post twice to pick it out, before penning his homage to some silly New York bakery.

  12. I’ve always felt that the more expensive the car, the crappier the driving.

    The same can be said for the size of the SUV and minivan.

  13. Success Breads. Of course — they are the world famous bakery located between Exits 32 and 33 off the Long Island Expwy. The bakery isn’t really in Lake Success — it’s in VIllage Park, but it’s close enough right? Success Breads envy is what other Long Island Bakeries feel.

  14. He shot him with an air gun, the article makes it seem like an accident.

    So unless you truly believe he wanted to hurt the intern, why should police pursue legal action? Unless of course the intern wants to press charges, which it seems he does not..

  15. Envy?

    A player ran up behind a player off the ball and threw an elbow into the back of his head. Had a Liverpool player done that to Rooney you would be screaming for his permanent ban.

    Join us in reality or don’t bother commenting.

  16. So many juvenile comments from fans. You hear the same silly stuff from Yankees’ fans. Are you one of the Glazers? DId you have anything to do with ManUtd’s success — I mean other than deciding you would root for the team that wins every year? No?

    Pity, not envy.

  17. Didn’t Webb say that De Jong deserved a straight red after seeing the replay? He didn’t see how bad it actually was in real-time. You have to realize what pressure they are under in games like the WC final, and I thought he did a great job in the WC Final. he is human after all and can’t see everything perfectly like we have the benefit of with instant replay and DVR.

  18. The ref is Dutch, not Brazilian. The Twente player sent off is Brazilian, and the Twente fans were angered by the official’s decision. I can’t imagine anything that should necessitate stopping a game. People don’t like officials in any sport across the world, and sometimes the basest element express that in a rude fashion.

    Take off the dress, put on your big boy pants*, and finish the game.

    * This phrasing is a prosecutable offense under a liberal interpretation of the speech codes of many Western nations, including those of Canada.

  19. All he did was shoot someone in the eye. He’s a soccer player. Boys will be boys, and sometimes non-athletes will suffer potentially fatal consequences as a result. Stiff upper lip and all.

    It’s not like he said something another person might consider offensive. The Brits would prosecute the heck out of that. Can’t have people trying to spread Americans’ reckless First Amendment rights to less free societies.

  20. “Well, it’s to be beyond me how Webb was assigned the Champs League final and the WC final, as he was almost universally recognized as subpar in both.”

    You have a very weird definition of “universal,” considering he was widely lauded for how he handled the WC final.

  21. And don’t forget Ashley Cole not even apologizing for shooting an intern with an air gun. Or Gerrard getting nothing for punching someone in the face when Joey Barton gets thrown in jail for essentially the same thing. Basically if you’re on the English national team you get a get out of jail free card.

  22. Players stepping in front of other players? Sure, happens 20 times a game.

    I suppose you missed Rooney deliberately (yes, and obviously so) elbowing the player in the face.

    I saw it in slow-mo and normal, um, mo.

  23. Outside letting the Dutch squad get away with common thuggery, I guess he did a reasonable job. I mean the Judo kick by De Jong didn’t warrant a straight red or anything.

  24. Slow motion is misleading.

    Disclaimer: not a Man Utd fan

    When I saw it in real time, I thought Mac subtly stepped in to bump Rooney as he was on a run path and that Rooney gave him a little shove/push to avoid a collision.

    But, realistically, this happens about 20 times a game. Is this really news?

  25. Webb was seen as handling the Final of the WC extremely well by most critics/newspapers. I thought he did brilliantly.

    But then again I’m a 15year+ United supporter so I have to support him as he gives us phantom calls and allows us to play 12 minutes beyond normal time according to some : /

  26. Well, it’s to be beyond me how Webb was assigned the Champs League final and the WC final, as he was almost universally recognized as subpar in both.

    He’s not a top referee as far as reality goes, but FIFA seems to think he is. Doesn’t mean the FA needs to think he is too.

  27. In the case of Webb, this is the same dude that reffed the final of the World Cup. It would make sense that he would get assigned to big games, like ones that Man U play in. Now I’m not saying I like Man U getting all the breaks (as a Spurs fan, I’ve seen firsthand what poor decisions the refs can make), but saying that top refs getting big games is shady is a little beyond me.

  28. “British police said they would wait to study the newspaper’s report before deciding whether or not they would pursue legal action.”

    THAT’S the extent of their investigation? God that’s terrifying….

  29. Tell ya, between non-calls like the Rooney elbow and the obligatory 12 minutes of stoppage time every time Man U is down, I sometimes wonder if the fix is in with them. But I guess the same could be said every time John Terry gets away with murder, too….


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