Chelsea defend ref allegations
Tue, 13 Nov 2012 12:07:00
Chelsea chairman Bruce Buck has hit back at the club's critics and defended their accusations of racial abuse against referee Mark Clattenburg.
Buck is bemused by the reaction following Chelsea's complaint that Clattenburg made a racist comment to midfielder John Obi Mikel during the Premier League defeat to Manchester United last month.
The club has been criticised by some quarters for pursuing the complaint following the defeat, in which Clattenburg made a couple of controversial decisions that went against Chelsea.
Buck insists the club were obligated to pursue the issue and it did not make them 'hypocrites' after their captain John Terry was found guilty by the FA for racially abusing Anton Ferdinand.
"The reaction has been very unfair," he told the Evening Standard. "We weren't interested in any confrontation with the referee or anybody else, had no thoughts of revenge on the referee.
"He made two obvious mistakes [sending Fernando Torres off and allowing Javier Hernandez's offside winner] which changed the tide.
"I felt we had the moral high ground, so I didn't really feel that bad about the defeat or have that feeling in my stomach. I thought we'd be treated very kindly in the newspapers next day."
Buck continued: "The press seem to juxtapose 'our support' of John Terry and what's going on here and looking at us as being a bit hypocritical.
"We have to divorce the John Terry situation from this. From our perspective, the latest situation was pretty straightforward.
"We have an obligation to report what may be misconduct. We did that, in good faith and not maliciously.
"Suppose we had tried to sweep this under the rug and said to the various players, 'Look, it's not a big deal and the press are going to be all over us, maybe you want to reconsider.' If that had leaked out, we would've really been crucified."