Rafa spent 5 hours with the FA Disciplinary commitee yesterday – who were looking in to his comments surrounding the opening day Tottenham game – before slapping him on his wrists and sending him on his way.
Liverpool were unfairly denied a second penalty in the match which we lost 2-1 at White Hart Lane.
Rafa was cleared of a charge that he had suggested that 26 year old Stuart Atwell was too young to be officiating. Atwell was the 4th official.
Benitez was also cleared of improper conduct after saying of Phil Dowd, the match referee, after the game:
“Can you get two penalties at an away ground? No. With this referee, I knew that this was impossible.”
However he was found guilty of misconduct after picking up a pair of spectacles when being asked about the referee’s performance.
The FA statement said:
“A Regulatory Commission of The Football Association has found Mr Rafael Benitez guilty of misconduct in relation to a breach of FA Rule E3, arising out of a gesture made by him during a post match briefing following the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool on August 16 2009. The Commission concluded the gesture was objectively offensive.
“Two other aspects of the misconduct charge against Mr Benitez were dismissed by the Commission.
“The Commission noted Mr Benitez’s previous exemplary disciplinary record over 23 years as a coach and manager at the highest level of the sport.”
The ‘objectively offensive’ gesture was holding a pair of glasses.
Neil Warnock, the Crystal Palace boss, also made a ‘spectacle reference’ the same weekend and went uncharged. The committee were critical of the FA for their apparent double-standards.
What do you think about Rafa being charged?