Referee Halsey makes complaint to police after receiving Twitter abuse


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The Independent Online

Referee Mark Halsey has made a complaint to Greater Manchester Police after receiving two abusive tweets on Sunday.

Halsey received the messages on Twitter, referring to his battle with throat cancer in 2009, after taking charge of Liverpool's 2-1 defeat by Manchester United and the 51-year-old has asked the police to investigate the matter.

Halsey made two controversial decisions during the Anfield match, both of which went in favour of the away team, sending off the Liverpool midfielder Jonjo Shelvey before awarding United a penalty, which was scored by Robin van Persie. Two tweets were sent out by disgruntled Liverpool supporters following the game, both of which were met with outrage from other Twitter users.

One post, from an account named @johnwareing1, read: "I hope Mark Halsey gets cancer again and dies" while another from @lfcjohn259 read: "Mark Halsey should've died of cancer."

The post from @lfcjohn259 was deleted and the @johnwareing1 account was removed completely.

Halsey is due to officiate at the Capital One Cup third-round meeting between Southampton and Sheffield Wednesday tonight as originally planned.

Some United fans sang offensive chants on Sunday and Margaret Aspinall, a member of the Hillsborough Families Support Group, has called for lifetime bans to be handed out to anyone making offensive gestures or singing insulting chants about deaths in football tragedies.

Aspinall said: "If they get caught, ban them for life so they can never go to a match again."