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Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Essien deserves to be punished

it defies belief that the referee and the linesman didn't see essien's challenge on hamann in last night's game. it comes as no surpise however that mourinho said he didn't see it either. the fact is uefa must take action because the tackle, if you can call it a tackle, was a disgrace. essien needs to be punished because he's going to break someone's leg one day. first it was bolton's tal ben haim, then liverpool's hamann - who's next?


Blogger Hamid said...

What baffles me is that there was no word of apology or remorse from Essien or Mourinho who even claims that he did not see it! What a load of bull! Disgraceful to say the least! FIFA & UEFA must certainly take action as this concerns the safety and playing careers of players. It should definitely set a precedent to detract players from lunging it studs first, knee high.

12/07/2005 9:54 pm

Blogger RedsMan said...

It wasn't a tackle, it was a shocking approach, and I think Essien was more reckless than intentional. Nonetheless, it was the kind of tackle that football is said to be very keen to outlaw, yet the only person not to have witnessed it was Mourinho. Therefore the referee should have seen it, because he realised Chelsea were given the advantage to carry on and lost it, so he blew for them to have the free-kick. The linesman should have seen it, the fourth official should have seen it too though I believe he has little to do with the play but more to do with conduct of both sides' management team, and the fans.

Yes, there is precedent for Essien so far and I sincerely hope it stops now, I don't want to see players injured horribly as a result. Jim Beglin had a horrible tackle by Everton's Gary Stevens that ended his career and Essien's conduct was practically tantamount to such an injury.

Mourinho said the Liverpool bench cried all night. I'm sorry, Chelsea fans, but there is no condoning Essien's conduct, and ignorance doesn't cover it either. It's very clear Mourinho aims to dust over it by stating he didn't see it yet saw the Sissoko tackle on Gudjohnsen's left ankle which looked worse than it actually was. I have taken tackles like that and had to grin and bear up and get on with the match, I didn't have technical medical staff to sponge and pamper over my leg or ankle.

Both tackles happened in approximately the same area, Benitez remonstrated so to the Chelsea bench, who, behind Mourinho, seemed ignorant of it. Had the shoe been on the other foot Chelsea would be in uproar, and I would be disgusted for a Liverpool player to consider he would have to result to such conduct. And in Sissoko's defence, his tackle is one seen more regularly than that of Essien, he got the ball first so it seemed more likely his momentum carried his foot onto and over the ball, rather than a lunge more towards player than ball. Clearly Essien's conduct was the worse seen so far, it could have been a broken leg and that wouldn't have gone down too well at all with Liverpool. And to see Hamann come on and display professional attitude despite what happened goes to show who came out the better, he didn't get back at Essien or lose composure. I wonder if Chelsea will, themselves, after this.


12/07/2005 11:52 pm

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pray tell, what was the reasoning behind FIFA's new ruling to not allow the review of matches for disciplinary purposes? It certainly doesn't help protect the referees or take the pressure off of them as they are the last and only word. It also doesn't make sense if the problem is applying video review universally, as the disciplinary action only applies to the competition the player in question is taking part in; i.e., review of action in CL leads to suspension in CL only. I still have not seen an explanation from FIFA.

12/08/2005 4:44 am

Blogger RedsMan said...

Anon (4.44am), I understand FIFA have match observers and delegates at the games and they report on any areas of the game that warrants attention, including the referee's performance. That is as close to a match review as we are getting at the moment, but provided it does see all, then Essien's approach must be included. How the officials didn't bring attention to it at the time bewilders me.

Particularly in relation to Essien's tackle on Ben Haim, Rob Styles wanted to increase the booking to a red card but was advised not to do so by FIFA. Sounds the equivalent of a 'made guy' wanting to take out another mafioso and being told by The Don 'no, that is not appropriate.'

But if no action is taken, then it goes to add to the feelings on the game's administration being of weak stature. The whole point of passing rules is to reduce the occurrence of bad conduct but yet when it arises the rules are flimsy and administered equally so. Therefore one loses faith in the adjudicating system of the game, just the same as one losing faith in the criminal justice system.

We have practically lost an influential player for our game on Saturday while Mourinho prefers to deny any knowledge of it, and considers the Liverpool bench were crying all game. That's a very poor response to a genuine concern. Is Mourinho really going to be that ignorant when he is ready?


12/08/2005 5:33 am

Blogger Hamid said...

Just to add to this array of comments, I just want to express something I feel about Mourinho's comments.

I truly do not believe that he did not see it as shown in the post-match interview. On the field, at Stamford bridge, anyone who has watched the game would know which team was happier with the result and which team had the edge over the other - Liverpool. Liverpool shut out all the channels on the field that Chelsea will normally play through. Chelsea thrives on teams making advancements into their own half and quickly playing the ball behind the opposition defence. That was not to be against Liverpool. The defensive display no doubt, lacks entertainment but it showed such discipline and technical drilling that Benitez has infused into the current Liverpool side. Basically, Chelsea with all due respect to them as the reigning Premiership champions could not break down the Reds defence. Mourinho knows it. He knows it very well. I feel that this was a shrewd tactic he used to divert the attention away from the field where Chelsea where ineffective in most of their attacks. He had claimed that "Benitez was crying all the time" & " You all saw what Stuart Pearce did against Blackburn. If it was Jose Mourinho, it would have been a 3 month ban!" And I figure that the claim that he made that he did not see the tackle is another ploy just to draw attention to himself so that no questions are raised over things that happen on the field. What do you guys think?

12/08/2005 8:58 am

Blogger BlindJak said...

There is no defending Essien’s tackle. It was horrible and a blatant red card had the ref seen it (I think his attention was diverted by the free kick he had just awarded to Duff and he was not following the path of the ball) should UEFA decide to use ‘trial by video’, which the press are reporting this morning they will, then any ban Essien receives is deserved and should be accepted without complaint.

Kung Ham It, you’re right that Jose uses press conferences to deflect the spotlight from his players and is not above making some outrageous statement that the press will latch onto and discuss rather than the performance or the players. He most notably uses this tactic approaching big games so that the game isn’t built up too highly in the players minds. Expect him to dominate the back pages next week in the build up to the Arsenal game.

Mind you I did remark to a few pals about Stuart Pearce's actions, I think most other managers, not just Jose, would have been red carded if they had gone on the pitch once, let alone twice. And bear in mind that the first encroachment was with aggressive intent and not the good humour of the second.

Just days before at the game in Betis Jose was in his technical area but was told to sit down by the ref. Go figure.

12/08/2005 9:28 am

Blogger T said...

Thanks for raising this issue SKG!

If Hamann's leg had been broken would the authorities still be prevaricating? Is this what it it will take??

I agree with everything said by Kung Ham It, Redsman, BJ, and anon. Essien was extremely reckless and the red stud marks that had raised below Hamann's knee just a minute after the lunge made for graphic viewing. I'm not a Pool fan but I also remember Lampard going after Alonso and breaking his ankle with a lunge on New Years day. Lampard wanted a yellow card so that the match he'd miss thru a 'fifth yellow' suspension would be a relatively meaningless Cup tie against Scunthorpe. I'm sure he didn't intend to cause the damage that he did, but he intended to go in recklessly and Liverpool suffered from Alonso's absence. If I was a Pool fan I'd be pretty angered (as much as you can be by a football incident- lets keep things in perspective!) by these two incidents.

Kung Ham It, your analysis of Liverpool's tactics is excellent! You and BJ are right that Mourinho uses a policy called 'make deliberately provocative statements' to deflect attention away from his players and onto him. He is the type of guy who enjoys the attention, and the players seem to thrive with its relative absence.

However, a policy of namecalling opponents is undignified and rude, and I guess it's up to Mourinho if he wants the public to view him as being that sort of character. Benitez is an example of dignity and personally I'd prefer my club to be represented in this manner.

12/08/2005 11:48 am

Blogger Skippy said...

Essien was reckless. He wasn't even looking at the ball. He should be suspended fo two matches.

Mourinho, is always starting on Rafa. I agree with Rafa "Jose, talks a lot." I would like to add, that some times he just talks for the sake of talking.

Mourinho, sees Liverpool as a real threat, and that is why he is constantly starting on them. He feels the same about Arsenal. By contrast, he is complementary of United, because he doesn't see them as a threat.

12/08/2005 10:57 pm

Blogger BlindJak said...

Surely if Essien is to be banned it should be for three games as that’s what he would have got if the ref had seen it and acted?

12/09/2005 8:16 am

Blogger T said...

Yesterday evening, UEFA announced that they had charged Essien with gross unsportsmanlike conduct. Disciplinary proceedings will be next Thursday.

It's surprising when the authorities do the right thing...!

12/09/2005 11:45 am

Blogger BlindJak said...

As I said previously if he gets band (which he will) it will be right and just. Mind you it’s funny that last year UEFA didn’t bother to follow the same procedure with Shevchenko after he head butted Mattrazzi in the quarter final with Inter. Their hardly doing anything to quell my persecution complex.

12/09/2005 1:59 pm

Blogger RedsMan said...

Blindjak, and others, thanks for your views, but most of all to Blindjak, who could have easily been more incense in his comments regarding a player of his club but has contributed poignantly with his views. Many wish to defend their club regardless of any wrong a player or member of that club does, and 'BJ' has written his view as a Chelsea fan without any malice or provocative words in return.

There isn't much more I can add, the right steps seem to be in place and Essien is to answer a gross misconduct charge. But Kung Ham It mentioned something I never would have dwelled on, about Mourinho's words. I felt it was a bit unnecessary to say we were crying all game, especially after the tackle which was the only real controversial point that one can expect to be highly tensed on. Also I thought it was funny that he didn't see it when it occurred in full view of both benches. And there is the repeating theme that a manager has done something which if it were Mourinho, he would be disciplined.

It is a good point Mourinho may have said these things to take the attention away from elsewhere. I will have to see further when Mourinho speaks again post-match. I thought it was amusing Benitez said Mourinho talks a lot.

But saying that, though I wrote about it in one weekend review and thought it was amusing to see Stephen Reid quickly return the ball, BJ raised the element of the first encroachment by Pearce being of an aggresive manner. From that moment the ref could have stepped in and said something, or consider it a one-off. It's not in the FA rules to punish a manager coming onto the pitch unless the referee makes note of it in his report.


12/09/2005 5:12 pm

Blogger RedsMan said...

There is something else, while we are on the subject. BJ mentioned Shevchenko's head-butt on Materazzi. It's open to UEFA's discretion when conduct can be reviewed to consider any action. But a head-butt that is even attempted and goes half-way, a feigned one, is still treated as if it made contact and that player is punished. So if Shevchenko did aim a head-butt, with the number of cameras around the ground, officials, delegates, it should surely have been picked up. That does surprise me.

12/09/2005 5:16 pm

Blogger T said...

Yep, definitely agree with Redsman about BJ's excellent contributions amidst a sea of non-Chelsea supporters. If you were manager of Chelsea all football fans across the country would be in admiration at the consistent level-headedness of reaction!

The double-standards point re Shev is a fair one. The arbitrariness of decision-making at both the FA and UEFA when it comes to disciplinary matters certainly leaves a lot to be desired.

12/09/2005 6:39 pm


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