Premiership: Shearer in the clear

Newcastle skipper Alan Shearer’s red card at Charlton on Saturday has been overturned.

Newcastle skipper Alan Shearer’s red card at Charlton on Saturday has been overturned.

The Magpies this afternoon confirmed that referee Andy D’Urso and assistant Graham Beale - the man who drew the senior official’s attention to the incident which led to Shearer’s dismissal - had viewed video evidence this morning and rescinded the decision.

United’s announcement came only hours after they confirmed that they were to appeal against what was only the second sending-off of the former England captain’s career.

‘‘Newcastle United are delighted to confirm that the Football Association and FA Premier League have advised them this morning that the red card Alan Shearer received at The Valley on Saturday has been rescinded.

‘‘Referee Andy D’Urso, together with assistant referee Graham Beale, viewed the video evidence this morning and D’Urso decided that the decision to award Shearer a red card was incorrect.

‘‘The decision has therefore been overturned and there will be no disciplinary action at all debited on Shearer’s record.’’

The news came as a complete vindication of Shearer, who was astonished to receive his marching orders for allegedly elbowing Charlton defender Jon Fortune.

D’Urso went to his pocket after consulting Mr Beale, who had raised his flag as the defender went to ground, but television replays showed that any contact had been accidental.

Shearer faced missing three games against Blackburn at home and Arsenal and Leeds away later this month as his side attempt to build upon a solid start to the season which currently sees them lying fourth in the Premiership table.

Chairman Freddy Shepherd said: ‘‘This is great news, but something we fully expected.

‘‘We are all very pleased, but particularly for Alan, who suffered the injustice in the first place.’’

Shearer’s only other red card came on August 7, 1999 when he was dismissed by Uriah Rennie for persistent foul play in a 1-0 home defeat by Aston Villa.

Earlier today Charlton leapt to the defence of centre-half Fortune, who was making only his second Premiership appearance after coming on as a substitute when Shearer was sent off.

Addicks manager Alan Curbishley said: ‘‘Jon was caught in the throat by Alan Shearer which is why he went down and stayed down.

‘‘It is absolute nonsense to suggest that Jon acted dishonestly, which would be completely out of character.

‘‘Maybe the referee could also look at the blatant penalty for handball we didn’t get.

‘‘Sometimes officials make mistakes and you have to live with that, but blaming Jon is completely unfair.’’

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