Wenger calls for ‘ethics committee’

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has hit out at the current disciplinary system in English football and wants an “ethics committee” established to over-rule referees.

The Football Association’s current rules state that a player can not be disciplined retrospectively if any of the match officials at that game saw the incident in question.

That policy caused outrage last month when Mario Balotelli’s studs-up challenge on Alex Song went unpunished after at least one of the four officials at the game saw the incident, but referee Martin Atkinson failed to act.

Criticism of that decision was particularly strong as it came on the same day the FA upheld the suspension of QPR midfielder Shaun Derry for the slightest of touches that brought down Ashley Young at Old Trafford.

Wenger says the current system lacks common sense and wants to see it overhauled as soon as possible.

“Basically we are in the position at the moment where if somebody takes a player’s leg off, if the referee has seen it and misjudged it, the player gets away with it. For me that is not acceptable,” Wenger said. “If you love football you want justice to prevail. How can it be right that Shaun Derry is suspended and Mario Balotelli isn’t?

“I am convinced that a committee with a supreme authority — an ethics committee — could rule on some cases, and make sure justice is done. They should have the power after games, in exceptional circumstances, to make a decision above the referee.”


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