Monday 19 February 2018

Richarlison escapes sanction

Richarlison was accused of diving under a challenge from Hector Bellerin to win the penalty from which Watford levelled the game before going on to win. Photo: Reuters/Paul Childs
Richarlison was accused of diving under a challenge from Hector Bellerin to win the penalty from which Watford levelled the game before going on to win. Photo: Reuters/Paul Childs

Matt Law

Watford forward Richarlison has escaped a retrospective ban after a English Football Association (FA) simulation panel cleared him of diving against Arsenal.

Richarlison was accused of diving under a challenge from Hector Bellerin to win the penalty from which Watford levelled the game before going on to win.

The case, which was the first involving a Premier League player, went to the FA's newly-formed simulation panel, but they ruled there was no dive and no further action will be taken.

The FA will not reveal the identities of the three-man panel who ruled on Richarlison's case, but they were picked from a 13-man pool of former managers, players and officials.

On the 13-man panel are Nigel Adkins, Rachel Brown-Finnis, Terry Butcher, Lee Dixon, Alex McLeish, Danny Murphy, Chris Powell, Trevor Sinclair, Keren Barratt, Steve Dunn, Mike Mullarkey, Alan Wiley and Eddie Wolstenholme.

The names of the three-man panel will be made public only if a player is retrospectively punished for diving and the FA hand out their written reasons for the ban.

There had been reports that Arsene Wenger may have landed himself in hot water for an angry exchange with Neil Swarbrick after Arsenal's defeat, but the referee did not mention any incident in his report and the FA are not investigating the Frenchman.

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