Newcastle manager all apologies for ref abuse: But should moaning managers be punished?

The Premier League ‘Respect’ campaign is in tatters just three months after the season has started. Sir Alex Ferguson has already been charged by the FA for his rant after Manchester United narrowly beat Hull City, while other managers have shown a similar level of disregard for the men in the middle.

While The Guardian reports some welcoming news today, with Joe Kinnear deciding to apologise to Martin Atkinson after previously calling him ‘Mickey Mouse’, it’s clear that something needs to be done to stop top-flight managers gobbing off in the press after their team has been on the wrong end of a bad decision.

Kinnear, who may face a touchline ban as a result of his outburst, said: “I am sorry if my post-match comments at Fulham caused any offence. I have accepted that some of my comments on Sunday were inappropriate and I will be calling Martin Atkinson to say that.”

While football managers regularly state in press conferences that “I better not say anything about the ref or I’ll get into trouble”, it hasn’t stopped the Newcastle, Manchester United and Sunderland manager from overstepping the mark once again. Surely some harsher action is required to stop referees getting abuse, when they’re simply trying to do a decent job and are only human after all.

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