Football: VIEW FROM THE CHAIRMAN'S OFFICE: FA Should Fix Its False Teeth

Daily Post (Liverpool, England), November 6, 2003 | Go to article overview

Football: VIEW FROM THE CHAIRMAN'S OFFICE: FA Should Fix Its False Teeth


Byline: LORRAINE ROGERS

SHOULD Rio Ferdinand be allowed to play against Liverpool on Sunday?

Having failed to attend a routine drugs test on Tuesday September 23,he has been charged by the FA with misconduct ``for failure or refusal to submit to drug testing.''

If the FA felt it was ``inappropriate'' that Rio Ferdinand should be available for selection for his country then why is it appropriate that he continues to play for Manchester United in the Champions League and the Premier League?

If the national team must be deprived of Rio Ferdindand's services then why should Manchester United have the benefit of them?

Surely the consequences of breaking the rules should be the same whether it is for a national,European or domestic game.

Why was it appropriate that Ferdinand played against Rangers on Tuesday and why will it be appropriate against Liverpool on Sunday?

If the FA's concern was that Turkey had a possible action to overturn the result or get a replay, then could Rangers or Liverpool do the same? There doesn't seem to be consistency.

Rio Ferdinand has until November 12 to respond to the charge and after that how long will it be before the FA takes a final decision?

Will it be weeks and months before any action is taken or he is cleared?

If our experience is anything to go by Manchester United could have the benefit of Rio Ferdinand's services for many months before the FA's disciplinary process runs its course.

You might remember that a few seasons ago we had a bright young midfield player, Sean Thornton, who admitted to the local press that he had agreed a contract with Sunderland when he was already under contract at Tranmere Rovers and did not have permission to talk to Sunderland. We submitted a formal complaint to the FA in July 2002 and,16 months on, theFA's disciplinary process is still running its course!

No action has been taken against Sunderland, theplayer, Peter Reid (themanager involved) or the player's agent.

Every month we have been in touch with the FA to follow up on progress. …

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