The Sheffield United manager Neil Warnock has criticised the game's rule-makers for taking no action against Aston Villa's Juan Pablo Angel over an alleged elbowing incident at Bramall Lane on Monday night.
Angel was caught elbowing the United captain Chris Morgan in the face in the dying stages of the 2-2 Premiership draw. The incident resulted in "a kerfuffle" in the tunnel, according to the Villa manager Martin O'Neill, who also admitted words were exchanged. Angel, though, escaped any punishment by the Football Association as the referee Mike Halsey witnessed what unfolded, taking no action at the time.
It meant the FA was unable to take retrospective action, sparing Angel a potential three-match suspension for violent conduct.
"I don't understand the rules at all on this retrospective stuff," Warnock said. "The whole law defeats me. Whoever is in charge, I think they do it to suit themselves. The interpretation is pie in the sky. I feel I talk common sense at times, but the people who instigate the laws seem to do it with a flip of a coin."
Warnock said he hoped the referees' head Keith Hackett had "had words" with Halsey. "Listening to Keith's comments, obviously he's seen it. He will be bewildered at how a top-class referee could admit to seeing that and yet done nothing about it. I would imagine he has had words with Mark Halsey regarding the incident.
"Anyone in football will tell you that was an intentional elbow."