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Bosses warned over Webb comments


Carlo Ancelotti

Carlo Ancelotti

Carlo Ancelotti

Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson and Chelsea counterpart Carlo Ancelotti have both received warnings from the Football Association for making comments about Howard Webb before their recent Barclays Premier League clash.

Both managers made positive remarks about World Cup final referee Webb ahead of the May 8 meeting of the title rivals at Old Trafford, contravening FA regulations which prohibit any comment - good or bad - about referees prior to games.

The governing body's regulatory commission warned Ferguson as to his future conduct in relation to the comments before issuing an identical judgement on the Blues boss.

The FA received criticism for raising an improper conduct charge against Ferguson over the positive comments he made and Ferguson is not believed to have offered a significant response to the charge.

And on Tuesday, both he and Ancelotti - whose comments were less widely reported - learned they will face no punishment beyond a gentle reminder not to do it again.

Ferguson had said in the build-up to the match, which his side won 2-1: "We are getting the best referee, there is no doubt about that. But (getting a bad decision) is definitely our big fear. We have the players to do it all right. We just hope it's our turn for a little bit of luck."

Ancelotti was similarly glowing about Webb.

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"I think it's not good to speak about the past, and also it's not good to speak about the referee because I don't want to put pressure on the referee," said the Italian. "Howard Webb is a fantastic referee, he has experience, he has skills, but this is football and sometimes when things are not good you speak about the bad decisions against you."

An FA statement about Ferguson's warning said: "A Regulatory Commission has warned Sir Alex Ferguson as to his future conduct.

"Ferguson was charged with improper conduct, relating to his pre-match media comments made about match official Howard Webb on May 6, 2011."

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