Rooney may be handed UEFA ban

December 12th, 2008 - 9:41 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Dec 12 (IANS) Manchester United forward Wayne Rooney can miss both legs of his team’s first Champions League knockout game, with European soccer body UEFA Thursday night examining a referee’s report into his conduct during a match against AaB Aalborg.During the match, Rooney allegedly stamped Danish midfielder Kasper Risgard.

UEFA can open a disciplinary case into such an incident even if there is no mention of it in the referee’s report - and judging by French official Laurent Duhamel’s response Wednesday he did not appear to have seen the 41st-minute challenge.

UEFA is reserving judgement, probably until Friday, on a challenge that Rooney was marginally unbalanced as he fell - but which left Risgard in little doubt.

Risgard claim that Rooney had apologised to him, suggesting that the Manchester forward knew he acted unlawfully.

“There have been cases where something that has been missed by the referee has later been seen as serious foul play and resulted in a suspension for the player,” UEFA spokesman Rob Faulkner said.

Should video evidence deem that the challenge, which came as both players fell to the ground, represents violent conduct, UEFA’s disciplinary committee will consider it.

UEFA has certainly been willing to act in the past. Alan Shearer was banned for two games in 2002 after UEFA used television evidence to examine a foul in which he was adjudged to have deliberately elbowed Fabio Cannavaro at St. James’ Park.

While playing for Chelsea, Michael Essien was also handed a two-match ban by UEFA for a studs-up tackle on Liverpool’s then midfielder Dietmar Hamann during a group stage match in 2005. That challenge went unnoticed by the German referee, Herbert Fandel.

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