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Liverpool v Manchester United: Jose Mourinho facing FA probe over ref remarks

By Jim Gracey

Jose Mourinho goes into tonight's massive Premier League clash with Liverpool at Anfield, facing his first brush with football authority as Manchester United manager.

The FA are looking into comments made by Mourinho with regard to the appointment of referee Anthony Taylor for the hotly-anticipated match.

Mourinho addressed the issue of Taylor taking charge of the match given he resides in Manchester after Keith Hackett, former head of the Professional Game Match Officials Limited body, criticised the appointment.

Asked if the criticism could affect Taylor, Mourinho said: "I think Mr Taylor is a very good referee but I think somebody with intention is putting such a pressure on him that I feel that it will be difficult for him to have a very good performance."

The FA may now even contact him before tonight's 8.00pm kick off. New rules were introduced in 2009 in an attempt to crack down on pre-match comments about officials which could be viewed as intimidatory or influential.

In its statement at the time the FA said: "Any media comments by managers, players or any other club officials relating to appointed match officials prior to a fixture will no longer be allowed - such pre-match comments will be deemed improper and dealt with accordingly."

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