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Tuesday, 14 February 2012

“Tell them to remember the Concentration Camps if they give you any shit

A referees' boss has been suspended after being found guilty by an FA panel of making a sick jibe about the Holocaust before a Jewish league match. Phil Morris, referee appointments secretary at the Manchester FA, was disciplined over comments he was said to have made in a dressing room at Manchester United’s Carrington complex. He reportedly told a ref who was due to oversee the Jewish league game: “Tell them to remember the concentration camps if they give you any ****." The alleged remark was overheard by a teenage Jewish official, who was left deeply distressed and told his parents. A formal complaint was made to the Manchester FA. They passed it to the association’s top brass in London who sent a four-man delegation to investigate. A hearing was held in Manchester on Friday. Morris, from Levenshulme, was found guilty of using ‘abusive and/or insulting words, aggravated by race’. It is the same rule that was breached by Liverpool striker Luis Suarez, who racially abused United defender Patrice Evra and was banned for eight matches. Morris – whose role includes choosing officials for Premier League reserve and Academy matches – was suspended from all football until May 1. He has 14 days to appeal. The remark was allegedly made while Morris was running the rule over officials who had overseen a Manchester United youth match at Carrington. One of the officials is believed to have been in a rush to get changed and leave – leading Morris to ask him why. When the official said he had to referee a Manchester Jewish Soccer League (MJSL) match, Morris is said to have made the offensive remark. Morris, who has been on the FA council for 19 years, had pleaded not guilty to the charge. He declined to comment when contacted by the M.E.N. yesterday. Lucille Cohen, president of the Jewish Representative Council of Greater Manchester and Region, branded the alleged remark ‘absolutely obscene’. Colin Bridgford, chief executive of the Manchester FA, said: “Following a hearing conducted by the FA on February 10, Manchester FA can confirm that the FA have suspended Philip Morris from all football and football activity until May 1. “The commission considered all the evidence in relation to a charge under FA Rule E3(2) in that Mr Morris used abusive and/or insulting words aggravated by race. Mr Morris has the right to appeal in accordance with FA regulations.” Mr Bridgford added: “Until that time we will not make further comment other than to state that the Manchester FA throughout have taken the allegations seriously and considered it appropriate for the FA to appoint the panel and hear the case independently.” Morris, himself a former referee, is himself involved in disciplinary hearings when amateur players from various Greater Manchester leagues appeal against red-card offences. He is a well-known figure in refereeing circles and gives talks to up-and-coming officials about implementing the laws of the game.

Source at: http://menmedia.co.uk/

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