Belfast Telegraph

Monday 22 December 2014

Torres escapes FA action

Fernando Torres, left, was involved with an incident with Jan Vertonghen, right, on Saturday
Fernando Torres, left, was involved with an incident with Jan Vertonghen, right, on Saturday

Fernando Torres will not face retrospective disciplinary action for scratching the face of Tottenham's Jan Vertonghen.

The Chelsea striker was captured on television scratching the face of Spurs' Belgian defender, leaving visible marks, leading the Football Association to review the incident. But, as one of the match officials saw the incident, under FA rules no action can be taken and he escapes any extra ban.

The FA said in a statement: "The FA will take no action against Chelsea's Fernando Torres in relation to an incident involving Tottenham Hotspur's Jan Vertonghen which occurred in the 50th minute of their match on Saturday 28 September 2013.

"One of the match officials saw the coming together of the two players, albeit not in its entirety."

Torres was later sent off for two yellow cards meaning he will serve just a one-match ban.

The FA has put a new system in place where a panel of three former referees will look at incidents retrospectively and decide if charges should be brought.

That replaces the old system where action was only taken if the referee viewed the footage and judged whether he should have sent a player off.

However, in both cases if any match official saw part of the incident, even if not the full detail, then the FA cannot take further action.

The FA statement added: "In these particular circumstances, in line with the FA's policy on when retrospective action may be taken, reviewed this summer by the game's stakeholders (the Premier League, the Football League, the Professional Footballers' Association, the League Managers' Association, Professional Game Match Officials Limited and the National Game), no action may be taken."

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