FA considers case against Jewell for referee remarks

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The Independent Football

The investigation into Paul Jewell's criticism of the referee Phil Dowd at the Emirates Stadium on Sunday would seem one of the more straightforward cases the Football Association's disciplinary department will face this season. Nevertheless, the governing body was yesterday keen to be seen to be following procedure.

There will be no comment until a transcript of the Wigan manager's comments and the referee's report have been studied. This process may be finished today. Jewell can then expect to receive a letter asking him to explain such comments as "Dowd has cost our team the points" and his description of the Staffordshire official as "the worst referee in the League".

Jewell said that his response would be to send the FA a tape of Wigan's 2-1 defeat to Arsenal.

There are two possible punishments. If Dowd reports that Jewell behaved badly on the touchline or insulted him when the pair spoke as they left the pitch, the Wigan manager can expect a touchline ban. If he is merely censured for his post-match comments, he will be fined. The current record fine for making comments to a referee is £20,000, levied on Graeme Souness in June 2005 after Barry Knight refereed Newcastle's defeat at Everton.

Jewell's chairman, Dave Whelan, said yesterday: "This particular referee seems to get it wrong quite a lot and surely they have to look at his performances over the season.

"It is disappointing when you get a penalty that is such a nailed-on penalty and it is not given. You wonder what the hell goes on. Do they not like giving penalties at places like Manchester United and Arsenal?"