By Matt Dodd.
Consistency. Not a word that comes to mind when you think of the FA.
On February 28th, the Football Association decided not to take action against Wayne Rooney for his elbow on Wigan’s James McCarthy. Let’s be honest, Wazza got off lightly.
That said, the FA have now decided to punish Rooney with a two-match ban for swearing at a television camera when celebrating not just a goal, not just the completion of a hat-trick, but a defining moment in this fascinating season which has given Manchester United the upper hand.
It does need reiterating that it was an early Saturday afternoon. Millions of people, including children and the elderly, were watching with wide eyes. It was, quite simply, a silly thing to do from Wayne.
But, let’s say Craig Mackail-Smith has scored a last minute winner for Peterborough United in an Npower League 1 televised match, and expressed his passion and emotions by swearing in front of a camera.
The FA wouldn’t look twice at it. Nobody would. Everyone would be too busy talking about what a fantastic season Mackail-Smith is having and considering Peterborough’s promotion chances. Simple as that.
But because this is ‘Wayne Rooney’, he gets special treatment.
And as if anyone needs reminding, this is a household name who has suffered a horrendous past 12 months, a footballer who has had inches and inches written about his life on and off the field, scrutinising and criticising his every word and move, piling enormous amounts of pressure on him to succeed.
Watching the footage of Rooney’s outburst at the camera, I’m sure a little bit of everybody can sympathise with him. It seemed to me that Rooney was responding to and answering his critics in his own, albeit foul and offensive, way.
After all, it is the public who are frequently screaming and swearing at Rooney, whether it’s in the stands, at the pub or in the playground. So, if anything, Rooney just gave the public just a tiny dose of their own medicine.
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