FA charge Brendan Rodgers for questioning referee’s appointment
Liverpool manager vented his fury over Lee Mason’s performance in the 2-1 defeat at Manchester City
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has been charged over comments he made about referee Lee Mason following the match against Manchester City on December 26. Photo: Anna Gowthorpe/PA Wire.
Brendan Rodgers has been charged by the English Football Association for questioning the appointment of a referee from Greater Manchester to officiate Liverpool’s defeat at Manchester City.
The Liverpool manager was incensed by Lee Mason’s performance at the Etihad Stadium on St Stephen’s Day, when a 2-1 defeat cost his team the Premier League leadership and Raheem Sterling had a first-half goal disallowed for an incorrect offside call.
Rodgers claimed the Sterling decision was part of a “horrendous” display by the match officials at City, but it was criticism of Bolton-born Mason’s integrity that resulted in the FA charge.
“I was surprised we were playing in Manchester and we have a Greater Manchester referee. I’m not sure what it was about,” said Rodgers after the game.
The FA asked Rodgers for “his observations” and he subsequently denied questioning Mason’s integrity, saying: “I wouldn’t suspect that Mike Dean, from the Wirral, has refereed many games for Liverpool over the years.”
Dean was dropped from refereeing the 2006 FA Cup final between Liverpool and West Ham for geographical reasons while Chris Foy, from St Helens, does not officiate Merseyside fixtures.
Having considered Rodgers’ response, however, the FA announced that it had charged the 40-year-old.
“Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has been charged by The FA over post-match media comments . . ,” the FA said in a statement.
“It is alleged the comments by Rodgers called into question the integrity of the match referee, and/or implied that the match referee was motivated by bias; and/or brought the game into disrepute; and/or amounted to a failure to act in the game’s best interests.”