Belfast Telegraph

Mourinho set to escape sanctions

Jose Mourinho appears likely to escape Football Association sanctions for claiming Chelsea are the victims of a clear campaign after referee Anthony Taylor booked Cesc Fabregas for diving.

Mourinho was adamant the Premier League leaders should have had a potentially match-defining penalty early in the second half of Sunday's 1-1 draw at Southampton, when Fabregas went down under pressure from Matt Targett.

Instead of a spot-kick, however, referee Taylor deemed it a dive and booked the infuriated Spanish midfielder - part of a what Mourinho believes is a growing movement against his side.

The Chelsea boss watched his words carefully, though, and is expected to escape disciplinary action.

Fabregas believes referee Taylor had "a bad day at the office".

"There was definitely contact," Fabregas said on chelseafc.com.

"I don't think the referee had the best game of his life but we're all human and a bad day at the office can happen to anyone.

"That's it, let's not talk more about it, we have to talk about football."

After the leaders' run of five successive wins in all competitions was ended, Mourinho said the Blues were losing Premier League points as a result of unjust decisions.

"I think it is a scandal because it is not a small penalty - it is a penalty like Big Ben," the Blues boss said following the match.

"In this country - and I am happy with that, more than happy with that - we will just say that it was a big mistake with a big influence in the result.

"I am happy that it is this way, with respect for the referee. He made a big mistake like I make, like the players make sometimes."

Chelsea have found themselves at the heart of the simulation debate in recent weeks, with Diego Costa and Willian booked for supposedly taking a tumble in the win against Hull.

After that match Steve Bruce compared a Gary Cahill dive as "like something out of Swan Lake" and West Ham manager Sam Allardyce accused Branislav Ivanovic of going down "looking for a penalty" on Boxing Day.

Asked if the Cahill and Ivanovic incidents had influenced referees, Mourinho said: "They are not incidents, they are not incidents.

"Of course [it has influenced the referee]. That's a campaign, that's a clear campaign.

"People, pundits, commentators, coaches from other teams - they react with Chelsea in a way they don't react to other teams.

"They put lots of pressure on the referee and the referee makes a mistake like this. We lose two points, Fabregas earns a yellow card."

Mourinho made those comments to the BBC and let loose again in the post-match press conference. The Portuguese said this has been an issue since the first day of the season, when Costa was wrongly booked for a dive against Burnley, and called for a change to the system.

"The double punishment is something unbelievable," Mourinho said.

"Anthony [should go to a] screen, see that he has made a mistake - he is a good guy, an honest guy.

"He writes 'I made a mistake, let's clean the yellow card for Cesc'. It should be a simple process."

Your Comments

COMMENT RULES: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. The moderator will not enter into debate with individual contributors and the moderator’s decision is final. It is Belfast Telegraph policy to close comments on court cases, tribunals and active legal investigations. We may also close comments on articles which are being targeted for abuse. Problems with commenting? customercare@belfasttelegraph.co.uk

Popular

From Belfast Telegraph