Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has been charged with misconduct by the FA over comments he made about referee Anthony Taylor in the buildup to last week’s league meeting with Liverpool. The Portuguese is facing a possible touchline ban for the offence.

 

Former head of Professional Game Match Officials Ltd Keith Hackett had earlier questioned the appointment of Anthony Taylor — the Manchester-based referee who is an Altrincham season-ticket holder — for Manchester United’s meeting with Liverpool, claiming that the decision was potentially “intolerable”.

In response to Hackett’s barb, Jose Mourinho suggested that the FIFA-listed referee would find it “difficult” to officiate in the game. When asked about Hackett questioning the decision of the PGMOL, a hesitant Mourinho was quoted by ESPN FC as saying: “I think Mr Taylor is a very good referee but I think somebody with intention is putting such a pressure on him that I feel it will be difficult for him to have a very good performance.

“I have my view but I understood and I learned a lesson by being punished so many times for some words so I don’t want to say anything [more] about it.”

Despite his measured words, the FA have now charged Mourinho with misconduct (via thefa.com) for “bringing the game into disrepute” with his comments. The United boss, who is likely to pay a fine, has been asked for his observations and has been given until 6pm on 31 October to respond.

Manchester United's Portuguese manager Jose Mourinho gestures during the English Premier League football match between Liverpool and Manchester United at Anfield in Liverpool, north west England on October 17, 2016. / AFP / Paul ELLIS / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No use with unauthorized audio, video, data, fixture lists, club/league logos or 'live' services. Online in-match use limited to 75 images, no video emulation. No use in betting, games or single club/league/player publications. / (Photo credit should read PAUL ELLIS/AFP/Getty Images)

Manchester United’s Portuguese manager Jose Mourinho gestures during the English Premier League football match between Liverpool and Manchester United at Anfield in Liverpool, north west England on October 17, 2016. (Photo courtesy – Paul Ellis/AFP/Getty Images)

Taylor enjoyed a splendid game in a clash that was expected to throw up many heated moments in the duration of the 90 minutes. The drab affair ended in a goalless stalemate, with Taylor issuing four yellow cards in the game — all to Manchester United players.

The FA does not permit managers to talk about match officials in the build-up to a game to prevent the referees from being influenced by the pre-match comments.

Mourinho has had his run-ins with the FA’s disciplinary unit in the past, having infamously paid a total of £140,000 in fines during his second spell at Chelsea for similar remarks about referees. He was even handed a one-match stadium ban for a squabble with referee Jon Moss in a 2-1 loss to West Ham last season.

Even though the United boss didn’t elaborately remark on the situation surrounding Taylor, he did break the regulations set up by the FA with his suggestive language. As such, if he is found guilty of the misconduct charge, he will have no one but himself to blame for the fresh trouble he finds himself in.

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