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Monday 04 November 2013

Pilot disciplinary scheme leads to Riether charge

Fulham defender charged under project using former referees for 'unseen' incidents

Riether has until Tuesday 5 November to respond to the charge

Fulham's Sascha Riether has been charged by The FA for violent conduct in the first instance of a pilot project where an incident in the Barclays Premier League not seen by match officials can lead to a retrospective charge brought about by a three-man panel of former match officials.

The charge is in relation to an incident involving Riether and Manchester United's Adnan Januzaj at Craven Cottage on Saturday 2 November. Previously, where the match officials had confirmed to The FA that none had seen an incident, the match referee was asked to review all available video evidence before being asked what action, if any, he would have taken had it been seen.  

The "Not-Seen Review Panel" was brought in over the summer after consultation with the Professional Game Match Officials Limited stakeholders, which includes the Premier League. The Panel is a three-man group of former Select Group officials, comprising Steve Dunn, Eddie Wolstenholme and Alan Wiley. An additional official, Adam Watts, will join the panel should any of the three be absent.

Under the project the three are asked by The FA to review the incident on an individual and independent basis and advise what, if any action, each believes the match referee should have taken had it been witnessed at the time.

For an FA charge to follow, all three panel members must unanimously agree that the incident is a sending-off offence. In the instance of Riether, the panel were of the unanimous decision that it was an act of violent conduct.

The Fulham defender has until 6pm on Tuesday 5 November to respond to the charge.

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Key Points

  • Fulham's Sascha Riether charged by The FA over incident in match against Manchester United
  • Incident was unseen by match officials but new pilot project has led to charge
  • Three former referees viewed video evidence and deemed the incident was worthy of a sending-off