Evra still angry over Chelsea brawl ban

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Manchester United defender Patrice Evra says he is still angry about being banned for four matches over a post-match brawl at Chelsea last season.

The Football Association ruled earlier this month that Evra was guilty of improper conduct at Stamford Bridge after striking Chelsea groundsman Sam Bethell on the side of the head.

United decided not to appeal the ban despite Evra's denials.

"I am very angry about it because I didn't touch anybody, yet I have a four-game ban," Evra said in Yokohama, Japan on Wednesday. "But sometimes bad things happen in life — now I am just focusing on the Club World Cup because I want to be a world champion."

United didn't want to risk delaying the ban with an appeal, since two of the matches are against lower-league opposition.

"We were very disappointed by the size of the ban. We thought it was disproportionate and a poor decision to be perfectly frank," chief executive David Gill said. "But we felt given the games he would miss, the issues surrounding an appeal and the distraction it would cause at a key stage in the season, it would be better to take it on the chin and move on."

"Patrice is a wonderful character and I believe him 100 per cent when he says he never hit the groundsman," Gill said. "He has our full support."

Evra is set to feature in Thursday's World Club Cup semifinal against Japan's Gamba Osaka, but won't return to domestic action until Chelsea visits Old Trafford on Jan. 11.