RoM is launching “Swear Watch” this weekend following the two match ban for Wayne Rooney. He was charged with using “offensive, insulting and/or abusive language” in our 4-2 win over West Ham.
Referee Lee Mason did not hear the swearing and did not see the swearing but in his match report claimed he would have sent Rooney off if he had.
On the same day, Pepe Reina was seen saying “No way, no f**king way,” to referee Martin Atkinson. Atkinson undoubtedly heard this but did not send him off and he did not include the incident in his match day report.
No FA rule deals with swearing directly or indirectly at a camera. The rule simply regards using “offensive, insulting and/or abusive language”. One might argue that using “offensive, insulting and/or abusive language” when talking to/shouting at a referee or assistant referee does more damage to the FA’s Respect campaign then swearing at a camera, but that is a matter of opinion.
This week the FA set a new precedent and have deemed using “offensive, insulting and/or abusive language” as worthy of a two match ban.
Due to our great respect and admiration for all the work the FA does, RoM will be helping the FA in their quest to get rid of the use of “offensive, insulting and/or abusive language” from the game. It is not possible that they were simply targeting a Manchester United player, so they must be genuinely keen to clean up our game. We will be on the look out for any player who breaks the same rule as Rooney so we can let them know about it if they or one of their very professional and fair referees misses it.
To do this, we need your help, so any time you’re watching a match in the league or FA Cup, please get in touch using the Contact tab at the head of the page and let us know the game, the date, the player involved and preferably the time it occurred. Footage would be even better. We will then post up the incident on the blog and you can also contact the FA to help them in their quest, if you wish to do so.
This rule applies to all games in England but the matches I will have a keenest eye on are Lee Mason’s, given his claim that he would have sent Rooney off if he had heard him swearing. His next game in charge is Arsenal vs Blackpool.
Apologies in advance for any foul language you might hear along the way. As football fans, I know swearing is a foreign concept but in order for us to do the good work of the FA, we may have to put ourselves through hearing words we otherwise wouldn’t.