LONDON, January 8 – Jose Mourinho was charged with misconduct by the Football Association on Thursday after the Chelsea manager made a series of controversial comments about match officials.
Mourinho claimed there is a “clear campaign by “people, pundits, commentators and coaches from other teams” against Chelsea and labelled the booking of Cesc Fabregas for diving in a 1-1 draw at Southampton on December 28 as a “scandal”.
“It is alleged his remarks constitute improper conduct in that they allege and/or imply bias on the part of a referee or referees and/or bring the game into disrepute,” a statement issued by the FA read.
Mourinho, who does not view officials as being part of any campaign against Chelsea but fears they may have been influenced by it, has until 1800 GMT on January 13 to respond to the charge.
Chelsea had been at the centre of a debate over diving when Mourinho made the comments.
Diego Costa and Willian were booked for simulation against Hull on December 13, prompting Steve Bruce to describe a Gary Cahill dive as being “like something out of Swan Lake”.
The west London club faced renewed scrutiny on Boxing Day when Branislav Ivanovic appeared to take a tumble against West Ham, the type of incident Mourinho believes is being unjustly scrutinised to Chelsea’s detriment.
Asked if recent incidents involving Cahill and Ivanovic had been influential, Mourinho said: “Of course. That’s a campaign, that’s a clear campaign.
“People, pundits, commentators, coaches from other teams – they react with Chelsea in a way they don’t react to other teams.
“They put lots of pressure on the referee and the referee makes a mistake like this.”
The FA also reviewed comments made by Mourinho on December 19, three days before the victory in Stoke, in which he spoke about the need for a “good, experienced referee”. Neil Swarbrick oversaw the match
“Having sought Mourinho’s observations on this matter, the FA has decided not to bring a disciplinary charge and has instead issued a formal warning,” the FA statement read.
“The FA prohibit participants from making any pre-match media comments including comments of a positive nature concerning the appointed match officials for a particular fixture.”