Chelsea star Eden Hazard faces a charge of bringing the game into disrepute and a potential multi-match ban from the FA after this moment of madness 13 minutes from time at the Liberty Stadium tonight.
Speaking after the match on Chelsea’s own TV channel, Hazard said:
“The boy put his whole body on to the ball and I was trying to kick the ball and not the boy.
“The boy came into our changing room and we had a quick chat. I apologised to the boy, he apologised as well and it’s over. Sorry.”
Chelsea boss Rafa Benitez tried to defend the indefensible by insisting both parties had been at fault saying:
“The boy has been into our dressing room, they have spoken and apologised to each other. They knew they were both wrong.
“He was wasting time, Hazard wanted to get the ball back quickly and they both made mistakes. We can’t change things now.
“I didn’t see the incident during the game, so I can’t say too much. But it left us playing with 10 players, which was a problem because we needed three goals.
“We will deal with it internally. He (Hazard) was frustrated. The ballboy was wrong and Eden said he was wrong, too.
“Do you not think we are disappointed with the situation? That we don’t regret what has happened? Listen to me, as Chelsea FC, we know it was a mistake.
“But we talked with the boy, we talked with the player. The boy was with us in the dressing room, everyone was very clear.”
The big question is what will the FA do? Remember they banned Manchester United’s Eric Cantona for eight months for his kung-fu assault on a fan 18 years ago.
I am not comparing the two incidents, expect to say they were footballers attacking people inside a football stadium.
So while I do not expect Hazard to get 8 months, I would not be too surprised if the FA bans him for the rest of the season.
What kind of suspension do you think the FA will give Hazard?