The Football Association is to ask the League Managers Association for a meeting after a number of high profile outbursts from managers made a mockery of their highly promoted Respect campaign.
The FA initiative was given the green light at the beginning of the season and was designed to promote better behaviour towards referees and other match officials.
But it doesn’t seem to be working.
At the weekend, Newcastle interim boss described Martin Atkinson’s performance as ‘Mickey Mouse’ while Barnsley boss Simon Davey was sent to the stands after he complained that a challenge by Sheffield United’s Chris Morgan on Iain Hume wasn’t deemed a red card offence by Andy D’urso. Hume is currently in hospital with a fractured skull and internal bleeding.
And Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson was informed this week that he was to be brought up on charges of improper conduct after berating Mike Dean following United’s 4 – 3 home win over Hull City.
Announcing the plan to meet with the LMA, the FA’s director of governance Jonathan hall said:
It has been disappointing to witness various incidents of managers publicly criticising referees recently.
We accept that it can be very frustrating for managers when an incorrect decision is taken but no referee does so deliberately, just as players and managers do not deliberately make mistakes.
It is easy to support officials when a decision goes your way, the real test is the ability to show understanding when a call goes against you.
Meanwhile, it’s understood that the LMA wants a representative, probably a former player or manager, on the board of Professional Game Match Officials Ltd, the body that oversees referees and assistant referees.