rss twitter facebook mobile


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.

To get in touch with the FA you must first register as a fan. Then you can contact them using this contact form.

Swear Watch video
Join us on Facebook

About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

View all posts by Scott »



  1. denton davey says:

    Just to put the cat-among-the-pigeons, check out this quote from UTD “legend” Peter Schmeichel which I located in Sky Sports Online:

    “I think it would be good for him [WayneBoy] to get away,” Schmechel told Ekstra Bladet.

    “It would be good for him to play for an other club. Real Madrid under Mourinho, is someone that could handle him and get the best out of him.

    “It is painful to say that that the best player you have, which he is at United, he is better off trying something new.

    “United will probably not sell him to another English club, but a change of scenery would help.”

  2. TheRadLegion says:

    everyone is afraid of getting banned for swearing.. thats why its been very quiet

  3. willierednut says:

    Comfortable win in the end. All about the results, at this stage. could have scored more goals, but no need to be greedy. Nani was different class today. How he’s not on the shortlist, for the main player of the year award, I don’t know. Valencia is a menacing threat. He must be a fullbacks worst nightmare. The Berb gets his usual goal at OT. Touch of offside, but who cares, right? All in all, we’ve done our job, over to Arsenal now.

  4. TI says:

    I’m a non United fan and am in absolute shock the penalty that has been handed to Rooney for such an (non) incident……

    You can count on me to notify the FA if any foul language is used during an EPL/FA/CC game…..

    They’ve set a precedent and need big cojones to implement in the future games

  5. dannysoya says:

    WTF schmeichel. Keep quiet man. Rooney is at the best club. He WILL stay here. He doesn’t need to go anywhere. I guarantee you he won’t play as well and won’t get as much adoration like he gets here from us. ROONEY IS STAYING

  6. ronomo says:

    I am pretty sure Bardsley swore after his goal against West Brom

  7. Costas says:

    Nani really just pissed all over that PFA shortlist today. And I was glad to see Berb get another one. It was also a good game or Ando to return in. Now lets unleash him on Chelsea and City.


    Schmeichel was a hell of a goalkeeper. No one said he was the sharpest knife in the drawer. ;)

  8. invertedquestionmark says:

    I think this should be a communal effort. If a lot of football fans send letters to the FA and the major newspapers week in, week out, it would have a much greater impact. A blog ran by a United fan can be easily ignored.

  9. sigmundv says:

    Someone mentioned FA Swear Police. I’ll add: Lead by superintendent Mark Payne…

  10. vILHELM28 says:

    The question – will someone provide video evidence and reports to the FA – to create havoc ?

  11. slim says:

    Lol this weekend feels like the late 90′s. Easy win, siting pretty at the top and the sun shinning down upon us. Take me home United.

  12. fergie is the boss says:

    Costas – they say the votes dont start until jan 2010, so what has charlie adams bale and nasri done half the year. nani has been sensational since his united career revival since jan 2010. When adams was voted who was in the championship, that says to me how in the fuck did berbatov not make it.

    On the game its just another game checked off, big win if arsenal and chelsea fail to win anither phew games we get the proper breathing space we need, because we still have another phew tough more games to go

  13. Always Be Closing says:

    fitb – it’s FEW, not phew!

  14. big talk says:

    got the FAN # and submitted a request for Reina swearing at the ref to be reviewed………..
    Inundate the fa with your observatiuons !!!!!!!!!!

  15. ScholesForGoals says:

    As much as I fucking loathe the Daily Fail, this was one image worth grabbing. Can’t wait to see how Mason gets on with the Arse game. The word scrutiny doesn’t even cut it. Bout time those cunts at the FA did some real work for a change, since they’re pretty much incapable of doing fuck all else. 6 games left, COYR!!

  16. parjo says:

    You should ask another feller bloggers to do the same, at least United bloggers. Make it bigger.

  17. RedHarry4Life says:

    Talk about swearing anyone ever watch Live at the Apollo. Some of the acts are virtually total fings all the way through.

    No mention of Noble punch at green on MOTD. Wonder why?

    Mind you they are as funny as fuck!

  18. StatesideAussie says:

    We were awesome in the first half until we scored the second goal, then took our foot off the gas. Some of the play by Nani and The Berb was outrageously good. Talk of offside over the first goal pissed me off, because on the broadcast I saw, the freeze-frame they used was snapped too early — the ball is in the air and Nani hasn’t kicked it yet. At that moment it looked The Berb was slightly off, but as the tape rolled, defenders were moving back (putting him onside) and the exact moment that Nani kicked the ball to pass it to him didn’t seem clear. At the very least, you’d have to say any claim for or against offside was dubious — and under the rules, benefit of the doubt is meant to go to the attacking side (an aspect of the rules that isn’t enforced consistently enough).

    After we got ahead, it was more a case of “job done”, I thought. They eased off so much I actually wondered if they had been instructed to do that, in order to conserve energy and reduce the risk of injury for this busy schedule. But SAF’s comments after the match made it clear that wasn’t the case.

    Now for Tuesday…

    And I love the Swear Watch…

  19. Lancaster Red says:

    Watching MOTD last nite, Peter Crouch celebrating one of his goals (think it was the first) ran over to the crowd and said ‘fck off’.

    Now I know it wasnt in to a camera but it was directed at the crowd (spurs fans!) could the new rule stretch to that?!

    Also Phil Neville in his post match interview said ‘sod it’, which to me isn’t swearing but Gary Lineker apologised for the ‘profanity’ directly after it.

    Not wanting to get Phil into trouble, but surely this is just as bad as what Rooney did, regardless of the severity of the words used?!

  20. StatesideAussie says:

    Lancaster Red … there is no new rule, merely a new interpretation of the existing rule. he FA has never said Rooney was punished for swearing into a camera: I have compiled all of their official announcements from their web site, and there is not mention of TV or cameras. The thing about the camera is a myth that has been circulated because the FA’s action was so blatantly biased, that even most anti-United commentators have found themselves looking for some rational explanation. But there isn’t one.

    Rooney wasn’t punished for swearing into a camera, nor even for swearing in public. The camera, as lawyers like to say, was not “an element of the offense”. But it did not provide evidence of the offense — had the camera not captured him swearing, the FA could not have charged him, because there would have been no evidence (given that the referee did not hear it).

    If a cop pulls you over and gives you a breath test and you fail, you are charged with drunk driving. You are not charged with blowing alcoholic air into the breath test device. The device itself provides evidence of the offense, but is not an element of the offense.

  21. billybowlegs says:

    piss off Arse……….

  22. SpurredoninDublin says:

    I have not come on here to have a cheap jibe at United fans, but I do believe that you are the most stupid fans in the world.

    You may well be correct that there is no specific offence of swearing into a camera, and there is probably no specific offence of urinating on a pitch either, but do you seriously think that if a player were to do this, the FA should do nothing?

    What Rooney did was hurl a mouthful of foul language into a TV camera that was wired for sound and going LIVE into millions of homes all around the world, at a time when many people were thinking about lunch. Had the match been recorded, it could have been edited out, and you might have had some justification for feeling victimised.

    In the 1970′s there was a TV presenter called Bill Grundy who’s career was wrecked because he failed to control people swearing on a program that went out at 6 pm. There are clear rules that “obscene language” must not be aired before 9 pm.

    As for MG, talking about how hypercritical you were of Rooney when he misbehaved, he seems to define “misbehaviour” as not wanting to play for United. What a cop-out!

    SAF has made just about one of the most patronising comments I have ever heard in my life with regard to his comments by Superintendent Paine. I think the problem is that Rooney is Using SAF as a role model.

    Then to cap it all, half the morons who are writing on this site are showing how really intelligent they are by spelling every swear word they have ever heard correctly. It’s a good job Rooney isn’t black, because we would then hear United fans screaming “Leave our nigger alone”.

    I am sure you have already dismissed my opinion, but nevertheless I will add that I think that Rooney is a train wreck waiting to happen, and I think it is likely he will go the way, of Best, Higgins and Gascoigne. If I am right about this, then what he needs now is not people who defend the indefensible, but people who will tell him he has done wrong and deserves to be punished. Hopefully, then he will learn and maybe avoid following Best, Higgins and Gascoigne.

  23. swagger says:

    sent mine

  24. torontored says:

    What a hypocritical world we live in.

    Sir Trevor Brooking (obviously would not say shit if his gob was full of it) comes out agaisnt Rooney – short memory I remember us playing West Ham (after the 1970 World Cup and when Bobby Moore was accused of nicking a necklace from a jewellry store).

    Standing on The Stretford End asking of Moore “Where’s your necklace, Where’s your necklace, Where’s your necklace – Bobby Moore – It’s in your handbag etc etc” Moore turned around and politely asked the Stretford End to “fuck off” and gave us all the two fingered salute.

    Guess it’s all in how you say it – will write to the FA and ask for an explanation.

    This whole episode is another example of the hatred the FA have of our success.

    FA – fuck off

    UNITED 194/2011

  25. King Eric says:

    Spurredon. Fuck off you patronising cunt. Yes I am sure you would love rooney to go the way gazza did but it aint gonna happen son. Gazza was a fucking nutjob who was smashed on coke valium temazzies and whatever else he could get down his neck. Mentally unstable. Difference is rooney had fergie to sort him out. The lad showed a bit of passion. He aint no gazza. You sound like a fucking over reacting ponce. Piss off you tory boy cunt.

  26. King Eric says:

    Oh and by your username one assumes you are a scouse fan. Except they won’t be in dublin will they? Bit rich calling united fans stupid. At least we aren’t fucking deluded and think liverpool are still a big club. What is it gonna be like next season with NO european football? Oh and finally take a look at your own captain. Great role model isn’t he. Cunt.

  27. SpurredoninDublin says:

    King Eric: I would ask you what sort of person you think I am but you are quite incapable of thinking.

    Nobody except someone who is sick in the head takes any pleasure in seeing great once great talent rolling. Do you think I enjoyed watching Best and co destroy themselves.

    As for Ferguson sorting him out, he’s had seven years to do it, and based on this season, he is getting worse rather than better.

    Just to prove the stupidity of United fans, you “assume” that I am a scouse fan because of my user name. Yes it’s quite clear that I support Liverpool SPURS, but my second team is really Everton SPURS, and I used to follow Tranmere SPURS. Clearly there is no fooling you. Let me know if you need any more evidence about the stupidity of United fans, even though you are too stupid to understand just how stupid you are.

    What Rooney needs now, is people who are going to tell him that he is in the wrong, and not people who only cares that he plays for their team. If Rooney left you for Chelsea, you would all be screaming for his head. It is noteworthy that reading through these posts, about the only criticism I see of Rooney, was when he threatened to leave you. I am sure that if Rooney were convicted of rape tomorrow, people like you would be arguing that he should be let off with a fine because it was his first offence.

  28. SpurredoninDublin says:

    By the way King Eric. Do you see how easy it is to make a point without swearing at people?

  29. smartalex says:

    SpurredoninDublin is a liar.

    Cheap shots, lies and deceit is his method.
    He condemns, criticizes and vilifies.

    SpurredoninDublin is a disgrace and an embarrassment to Dublin, and to Spurs.

  30. SpurredoninDublin says:

    I can see why they call you “Smart Alex”. Is it your job to look after the brain cell today?

    So go on: What lies have I told? Why am I not allowed to CRITICISE (correct spelling so I guess you are not that smart after all). Why am I am embarrassment to Dublin? How many people do you know in Dublin that know me? As many as ZERO! WOW!

    Do you not consider that the United fan who thought I was a scouser, is the real genius amongst you?

    As for my cheap shots, these were in response to the foul mouthed abuse from your resident genius King Eric. But let’s face it, expense would be wasted on him.

    I wonder if you would have been able to work out that I was a Spurs fan if I had not given so many hints?

    However, if you want to debate the real issue, my heart goes out to people like Best, Higgins and Gascoigne. When they were on top of the world, and misbehaving everybody was making excuses for their misbehaviour. Look at them now. Best died a slow lingering death. Higgins ended up in broke and in sheltered accommodation. Gascoigne has had numerous arrests and been sectioned under the Mental Health Act.

    Like Rooney today, they were all great talents in their time. Like Rooney today, nobody was prepared to tell them when they were wrong, and if you look at the number of unsavoury incidents Rooney has been involved this year, then you have to come to the conclusion that his behaviour is getting worse not better. He needs someone to say to him, “You are a married man with a kid. When you go with some old prostitute that is old enough to be your mother and you give her £100, the press will give her £5,000 for the story, and in a few years time, your kid is going to read about this on the Internet and he is going to wonder why you disrespected his mother so much”.

    Before anybody wants to tell me, that what he does in his private life is his business, I will tell you that you are right. The problem is that Rooney is not capable of keeping these things private.

    Somebody needs to tell him about Best, Higgins and Gascoigne, because if all you care about is that he plays for your team, and he should be allowed to do whatever he likes as long as he plays well for you, then you are contributing to the problem

  31. smartalex says:


    I would like to discuss and debate the issues you raise.

    Not with you, though. You are a rude outsider who calls my friend bad names.

    You are a visitor to RoM, yet you fail to show respect to those we love.

    An unreserved apology to King Eric is due from you.

    Please don’t respond to this comment rudely. I am investing this time in the hope that you will recognise that it is for you to climb down and initiate reparation.

  32. smartalex says:


    not being what it purports to be; false or fake : separating authentic and spurious claims.
    • (of a line of reasoning) apparently but not actually valid : this spurious reasoning results in nonsense.
    • archaic (of offspring) illegitimate.

    bogus, fake, false, counterfeit, forged, fraudulent, sham, artificial, imitation, simulated, feigned, deceptive, misleading, specious; informal phony, pretend.

  33. smartalex says:

    reject with disdain or contempt :
    ORIGIN Old English spurnan, spornan; related to Latin spernere ‘to scorn’ ; compare with spur .

  34. SpurredoninDublin says:

    Let me get this right: Your friend calls me a “patronising cunt” “a fucking over reacting ponce.” “tory boy cunt.” “Cunt.” and a “scouser”, and you think I should give him “an unreserved apology”.

    Don’t think so!

    On the other hand, my mother always told me not to argue with the retarded, so for that I reason, I am making an unreserved apology to you. if I had known you were mentally defective, I would never have attempted to start a rational debate with you.

    Somehow or other, I think I will manage to live without your forgiveness.

    I know that the main industry in your city is drug dealing, so if you stop consuming your goods you might be able to protect that remaining brain cell that you are looking after on behalf of all United fans.

  35. smartalex says:

    The truth is a sufficient defense. It is apparent to all United fans that you are a “patronising cunt” “a fucking over reacting ponce.” “tory boy cunt.” and a “Cunt.”

    Of course, these descriptions are subjective.

    As far as being described as a “scouser,” that is a product of your ambiguous user name, no doubt chosen by one of your two-faced persona.

    You are a wind up merchant. Here only to frustrate and anger. Else your approach would be truly reasonable, instead of deliberately antagonistic.

  36. SpurredoninDublin says:

    What is so ambiguous about my username that leads anyone to believe that I am a scouser.

    I can imagine if my name was something like “dolescroungerindublin” that you might have reason to believe that I was a scouser, but I’ve never seen any connection between “Spur” and Liverpool.

    Anyway, it’s not that you find me antagonistic that worries you, it’s the fact that I have dared to talk about the Elephant in the room when no one else has.

  37. smartalex says:

    spurREDoninDublin, I presume.

  38. SpurredoninDublin says:

    All due respect to you. I never saw that coming, but on that basis, I could also have been an Arsenal or United fan.

    Seeing as my team plays in white, shouldn’t I be the one looking for “REDS under the bed.

    This is not a joke, but the way you reasoned that out, reminded me of a friend who believed that you got Hepatitis from wearing tights.

    Sometimes there are subliminal messages, and sometimes it really is a case of WYSIWYG.

  39. SpurredoninDublin says:

    Just thought about it: If I was a scouser, I could use the name “inbREDindublin”

  40. smartalex says:

    I also expect that you were considered scouse by default. In any year we only get spurs supporters for the first half of games against you. For the rest of the season our only contact is via David.


You must be logged in to post a comment.