A youth footballer has been banned for two games and fined after swearing at the referee despite the fact that he suffers from Tourette’s syndrome.
I suppose this isn’t quite as crazy as a footballer wiping his ass wife £20 notes, footballer’s part-time jobs or that Brazilian U13’s match that ended up turning into a mass brawl but it is still crazy to think this kind of stuff can happen in today’s world of football.
The 14 year-old goalkeeper, Owen Thompson, told the referee to “fvck off” after the ref made a dodgy decision regarding a goal that was awarded against his team.
After the red card the manager of Ware Youth, Alistair West, explained to the ref that there had been a misunderstanding and showed him the medical card detailing the lad’s syndrome — however — the referee decided to let the sending off stand as well as any suspension.
Thompson was then suspended for two games and ordered to pay a £25 fine to the FA for swearing at a referee during match play. Thompson’s mum has come out to her local paper to describe the situation as “ridiculous” and that the thought of basically suspending someone for having an uncontrollable tick is disgusting, saying: “Last week we learnt he has been given a two-match ban and a £25 fine. It’s ridiculous. Football is a really important part of his life.”
The schoolboy, who once had trials for Watford, is said to be quite the promising footballer but is now considering quitting the sport after the FA’s terrible decision. Thompson explained that: “Football often suppresses my ticks, but I cannot control them when I get upset or stressed. He just really stressed me out.”
My minimal experience with Tourette’s comes from watching a South Park episode where Cartman pretends to have it so he can swear at grown ups and watching that show that was on Channel 4 a couple of years ago about the syndrome – here’s a video that shows that they clearly are unable to control their ticks:
Possibly the worst thing about it all is that Ware Youth went on to lose the match to Bengeo 2-1 — after which the young goalkeeper refused to shake the ref’s hand.
When Ware Youth later appealed the ban and subsequent fine they were told by Hertfordshire Football Association that as a result of him refusing to shake hands they deemed the curse was out of anger and that he should have exercised more control.
Owen’s suspension has since been reduced to just a one match ban and the fine docked by a further £10 to bring it to a more reasonable £15 — but in all honesty this is most likely because of the bad press it was generating. One can only imagine that Platini had something to do with this rule.
Talking about football and his syndrome Thompson also took time to mention that his hero was Toffee’s goalie Tim Howard who also battles with the syndrome: “He is my inspiration. I look up to him.”
Bottom line is just because you’ve got Tourette’s doesn’t mean you can’t turn out to be a shit hot goalie who can score from 100 yards out. Cue Tim Howard:
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