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Football Federation out to discipline Mourinho for eye-poke

MADRID, SPAIN, August 24 – Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho slammed “hypocrisy in football” on Tuesday on learning he faces a potential suspension after the Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) opened a disciplinary inquiry into his Supercup fracas with Barcelona assistant coach Tito Vilanova.

Mourinho insisted last week he was not sorry for poking Vilanova in the eye in the final moments of their 3-2 loss, which gave Barca an overall 5-4 aggregate triumph.

But after television images and press photos gave the incident widespread coverage, the Federation moved to act.

Madrid insist that Mourinho was responding to a series of provocations and insults from the Barca bench after tensions boiled over at the Camp Nou.

The RFEF’s disciplinary committee said it had opened an inquiry against Mourinho for his behaviour which could breach two articles of the body’s disciplinary code.

If the committee finds against Mourinho he could be suspended for between four and 12 matches based on the first article and between four and ten on the basis of the second.

He could additionally be fined if found to have engaged in “serious misconduct.”

Vilanova faces a four-match ban if he is found to have engaged in conduct deemed “contrary to good sporting order.”

Both men will now be given an opportunity to explain their actions.

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Mourinho promptly got his retaliation in early in the form of a letter published on Real’s website in which he apologised specifically to Real fans – but nobody else.

“I … wish to apologise to Madridistas, and only to them, for my attitude in our last game. Some people are better adapted to the hypocrisy in football than I am, and they hide their faces and speak in whispers deep inside tunnels,” Mourinho charged.

“I’m not learning to be a hypocrite, and I don’t want to.”

Mourinho furthermore dismissed rumours surfacing in the media suggesting that he might even quit Madrid after the furore which followed another ugly spat between Real and Barca during last spring’s Champions League semi-final.

On that occasion Mourinho belittled Barca coach Pep Guardiola’s achievements in winning the 2009 Champions League after first creeping past the Portuguese coach’s former side Chelsea, who were denied several penalties before going out to a last-gasp goal.

“Only those who don’t know me can dream, make up or believe I may leave Real Madrid at this stage,” Mourinho insisted.

Real issued a statement Tuesday evening saying the club was “surprised” by the RFEF’s move.

“Real Madrid Football Club expresses its surprise for the fact that this investigation has been ordered five days on from the (Barcelona) match,” the statement read.

The RFEF meanwhile handed a one-match ban to Barcelona striker David Villa and Madrid pair Mesut Ozil and Marcelo for their role in a brawl which marred the end of last weekend’s Camp Nou encounter.

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Barcelona’s Javier Mascherano and Xavi and Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo, Pepe, Sergio Ramos and Fabio Coentrao were warned as to their future conduct after they also joined the fray.

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