Both challenges were good, clean tackles, with the defenders winning 100 per cent of the ball. No complaints from the players on the receiving end as well there shouldn’t have been. There was more danger of Andy Carroll and Fernando Torres battling it out for the Golden Boot than anyone getting hurt from those tackles. Yet Vincent Kompany was red carded. Even more astonishingly, after reviewing the tackle, the FA has gone ahead and upheld Chris Foy’s laughable decision, giving City’s skipper a four match ban. Many people will have been angry with the referee and of course Wayne Rooney for the part he played, but on reflection, you’d have to say that it’s the rules that need changing. It’d be nice to see the FA use common sense every now and again, but unfortunately, even the most deluded of observers would have to concede that that is a distant fantasy.
If Kompany deserved a red card, there were a few other incidents in that FA Cup tie that should also be deemed punishable by multiple game bans. Here are some potential new rules for the FA to consider…
Nigel De Jong – Pulled out of the challenge that might have blocked Danny Wellbeck’s volley. No two ways about it: he bottled out, allowing United to storm into a 0-2 lead. Verdict: Yellow card and Take One For The Team.
Wayne Rooney – Missed a penalty. No excuse for a professional (who can and does practice) missing a pen as far as I’m concerned. Give Noel Gallagher a guitar and ask him to play an E chord. See how many times he strikes a C# before clumsily dropping his Epiphone to the floor. Verdict: Yellow card and a penalty awarded to Manchester City.
Chris Foy – Not only did he take the outrageous decision to send Vincent Kompany packing on the advice of Wayne Rooney, but he also missed a stonewall peno for both teams in the second half. Verdict: Since he wasn’t dismissed during the game, a retrospective ban from refereeing for three matches. Also forced to walk the Tunnel Of Death.
Paul Scholes – Brought on to keep possession for United with his team leading 1-3. Slack play allowed James Milner to nip in and cross for Sergio Agüero to score City’s second. Verdict: Second yellow card (Paul Scholes should automatically start the game on a booking just for being Paul Scholes).
Sir Alex Ferguson, Wayne Rooney & Rio Ferdinand – Each have maintained that Kompany deserved his sending off. Just incredible that anyone could ever spout such nonsense. Imagine the language from these guys if it’d been the other way around. Verdict: Rooney and Ferdinand banned from Twitter for five weeks. Sir Alex banned from speaking to or screaming at the fourth official for four matches.
Just the kind of progressive thinking the FA needs surely? Yeah, maybe not.