Monday 20 November 2017

Brendan Rodgers accepts FA charge for Lee Mason criticism

Brendan Rodgers has accepted the FA charge
Brendan Rodgers has accepted the FA charge

Chris Bascombe

Brendan Rodgers, the Liverpool manager, has accepted an FA charge for criticising the appointment of referee Lee Mason following his side’s recent defeat to Manchester City.

Rodgers has written to the FA to inform them he will not contest a breach of the rules when he publicly questioned why an official from Greater Manchester was employed for his side’s 2-1 defeat on Boxing Day fixture.

The FA gave Rodgers until 6pm on Wednesday to respond to the charge that he "called into question the integrity of the match referee, and/or implied that the match referee was motivated by bias; and/or brought the game into disrepute; and/or amounted to a failure to act in the best interests of the game".

The FA will now await the decision of a commission before deciding what punishment to impose, usually a warning of future conduct of a fine.

Rodgers said the officiating in the Etihad Stadium was "horrendous" and later clarified his remarks regarding the selection of Mason.

"I was talking in terms of geography and I certainly wasn't questioning the integrity of referees," he said.

"I wouldn't suspect that Mike Dean, from the Wirral, has refereed many games for Liverpool over the years.”

Meanwhile, Liverpool are still waiting to learn the full extent of defender Daniel Agger's calf injury.

The 29-year-old was forced off in Liverpool's FA Cup third-round win over Oldham at Anfield on Sunday, leaving his side with 10 men for the closing stages.

Agger has undergone a scan which has confirmed the injury as a strain but further assessment will be required to determine how long he might be out.

Agger had only recently regained his place in the side following injury to Mamadou Sakho.

Sakho was expected to be out for six weeks after suffering a hamstring injury in the loss to Chelsea on December 29, although reports have suggested his recovery is ahead of schedule.

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