Stamford Bridge star to get off hook.
Chelsea defender Ashley Cole will not be punished by the Football Association for his tackle on Manchester United striker Javier Hernandez.
The England international was booked for the foul during the 3-1 defeat at Old Trafford, causing the Mexican to be substituted.
United manager Sir Alex Ferguson claimed Cole should have been sent off, labelling the tackle as ‘shocking’ and ‘reckless’.
Under Fifa rules, Cole cannot be punished retrospectively because the officials took action to deal with the incident at the time.
Referee Phil Dowd elected to consult with his assistant yesterday before deeming a yellow card to be a sufficient sanction.
It was uncertain today how clear a view Dowd himself had of the offence, with the FA yet to receive his report from the game.
Meanwhile goalkeeper Petr Cech refuses to make excuses for his side’s defeat, despite the first two goals, from Chris Smalling and Nani, both having more than hint of offside to them.
“It is true that Smalling’s goal should not have counted because there was a clear offside which TV replays confirmed afterwards,” he said.
“But we cannot take that as an excuse as they managed to add more goals. Nani’s goal was beautiful, he hit it superbly.
“As for the third goal – the ball bounced to the feet of Rooney who had an empty net at his mercy and he does not fail in such positions.”