Thierry Henry’s efforts to become the first soccer player in history to lift rugby’s William Webb Ellis Trophy, while playing in the football World Cup, were bound to leave a bitter taste in the mouths of most Irish fans and neutrals who witnessed it.
It truly was a disgusting episode.
Fifa, however, have taken this bad situation and made it infinitely worse for the fans and even Teary (sic) himself, by doing absolutely nothing.
Let’s face it nobody likes seeing killers get away with it scot-free and Henry murdered Irish hopes in a way that calls for the “beautiful game” to be renamed “it’s got a great personality game”.
If they had found a peg on which to hang a stiff sentence — which they could have — they would have at least left the Irish feeling a fraction better and given Henry the modicum of justice he could point to as his punishment for the crime.
Instead the Fifa “disciplinary committee reached the conclusion that there was no legal foundation for the committee to consider the case because handling the ball cannot be regarded as a serious infringement as stipulated in article 77a of the Fifa disciplinary code,” they said in a statement.
The key in terms of 77a is that it must be a “serious infringement” that escaped the attention of officials.
If you have regard to the Fifa disciplinary code you will see what constitutes “serious infringements” with punishment guidelines for each. Fifa are correct in pointing out that deliberate handball is not listed as a serious infringement, which accordingly means that they have no jurisdiction. It does not, however, mean that they can’t squeeze it into one of the items that do constitute a serious infringement.
Yes, even if it means square peg in round hole time.
Even if it means charging him with driving his car and chewing gum while seated next to an offensive girlfriend who once met Pete Doherty before he had the full frontal lobotomy.
Switch venues to Manchester where City striker Carlos Tevez scored twice against his former club Manchester United to clinch a 2-1 victory in the first leg of their Carling Cup semi-final on Tuesday.
This time it is Gary Neville who is the offender in responding to provocation from Tevez. After scoring Tevez ran straight at Neville, who was warming up to come on as a substitute and made a gesture with his hand to indicate that his former team-mate talks too much. This clearly in response to Neville’s pre-match hype that Tevez was overpriced.
Neville’s response was the middle finger which was caught by the cameras but not — like Henry — the match officials.
Undoubtedly he will be charged and punished by the FA because they do have jurisdiction over the incident despite match officials not picking it up.
In other words you can wreck the dreams of a nation in front of the entire world in the most disgusting manner and Fifa can just throw up their arms, yet give ol’ man Tevez the middle finger, which he probably deserved (and trust us there isn’t a manure fan among us) and you face Armageddon.
That’s not an anomaly that’s just pissing in the wind.
How, for example, could you ever justify that aberration to Irish Manchester United fans?
Best Fifa rethink charging Henry and the different football bodies provide some sort of uniform rules that avoid this type of thing.
Shit in your hat and punch it.