FA to appeal Mourinho being cleared of abusive language charge

Published: Updated:

The English Football Association said on Wednesday that it would appeal the decision to clear Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho of using abusive language after his team’s Premier League victory over Newcastle United last month.

The Portuguese coach was alleged to have directed an insult in his native tongue towards a camera that was tracking him down the touchline after the 3-2 comeback win.

An independent regulatory commission cleared Mourinho of the charge on Oct. 31 and published the written reasons for the decision on Wednesday.

“Having carefully considered the written reasons of the Independent Regulatory Commission relating to the case involving Jose Mourinho, the FA can confirm it is appealing the decision,” the FA said in a statement.

Mourinho was charged with being in breach of FA rule E3(1), which prohibits “violent conduct, serious foul play, threatening, abusive, indecent or insulting words or behaviour.”

The commission agreed that Mourinho had used “a Portuguese colloquial profanity” but said that “profanity... is commonplace in football and spectators who view matches... frequently do hear or interpret participants swearing.”

“We find that (Mourinho) was celebrating victory without aiming the words at anyone in particular,” the commission added. “His words were inaudible ... Thus, the objective person would have had to lip read (his) mouth and interpret Portuguese colloquialisms to accurately decipher the comments.

“We did not consider the simple use of profanity of itself to be improper in this context so as to breach FA Rule E3.”