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'SPITTING' MADNESS 'SPITTING' MADNESS; Five Midland grassroots football officials allegedly spat at already this season.

Byline: MIKE LOCKLEY Staff Reporter mike.lockley@trinitymirror.com

IVE officials have been allegedly assaulted this season while in charge of local grassroots soccer matches - and all five have been spat at, it is claimed.

FToday, the Sunday Mercury has no hesitation in naming thugs responsible for crossing the line by threatening those charged with keeping control of mud and nettle matches in the West Midlands.

The names have been provided by Birmingham County FA as part of our on-going Respect The Ref campaign, dedicated to stamping out violence in pub football.

And it's working, big time. Judging by the angry phone calls from shamed players, they don't relish being included on our roll of dishonour.

And they are mending their ways.

n The 1,586 sendings off from last July to this November are 40 down on the previous season.

n Bookings have fallen by 546 to 8,127 and, over the previous two seasons, the figure is a staggering 1,065 down.

But there is still work to be done. The County FA, which oversees senior and junior matches, has probed 34 matches abandoned due to trouble and issued 47 charges as a result.

There have been 29 cases of threatening behaviour towards officials and 103 of improper conduct, which includes swearing.

County FA discipline n County FA discipline boss Mike Fellows said: "We do get very posi'tive feedback - as well as the angry calls - over the 'Respect the Ref ' campaign. I've had a number of calls from officials who say, 'about time.'.

"The big difference is that before, players would get suspended and it was only really known locally. Many simply went over the border and signed-up for a different team.

"The Sunday Mercury has stopped that happening.

Because their names appear in print and online, the suspensions are made known to a wider audience. What is really pleasing this season is that there are no physical assaults, where last year we dealt with a number of serious ones."

" Here's one in the eye for the soccer" Here's one in the eye for the soccer spitters - they face being banned sine die and can't even ask for a review of their cases for five years.

Two have already been dealt with. Shaha Uddin, of Warley Sunday League shaha Uddin, of Warley Sunday League side Smethwick Tigers, and an under 17-year-old from the 17-year-old from the Stourbridge Youth League have been forced to hang-up their boots until at least 2019.

Other bad boys are: Other bad boys are: improper conduct against improper conduct against a match official, includa match official, including physical contact and ing physical contact and threatening or abusive lanthreatening or abusive language and behaviour. Jason Andrews of Valbees FC Jason Andrews of Valbees FC (Warley Sunday League). Suspend(Warley Sunday League). Suspended 182 days; Ryan Williams of Jubied 182 days; Ryan Williams of Jubilee Rangers (Sandwell District Footlee Rangers (Sandwell District Football League). Suspended 182 days; ball League). Suspended 182 days; Sam Foster of Range Rovers (Myton Sam Foster of Range Rovers (Myton Soccer Small sided Centre). SuspendSoccer Small sided Centre). Suspended 84 days; Not named due to age, ot named due to age, Coldlands Colts U16 (Central WarColdlands Colts U16 (Central Warwickshire Youth League). Suspended wickshire Youth League). Suspended 182 days.

improper conduct against a Match improper conduct against a match official, including threatening and/or Official, including threatening and/or abusive behaviour.

boss Mike Fellows Nathan Telford of Halesowen athan Telford of Halesowen Members (Dudley and Cradley Members (Dudley and Cradley Heath Sunday). Suspended for eight matches; Connor Heath Sunday). Suspended for eight matches; Connor Gardner of Myton Coundon Social (Coventry and DisGardner of Myton Coundon Social (Coventry and District Senior Sunday League). Suspended for 12 matchtrict Senior Sunday League). Suspended for 12 matches with the end date to be confirmed; Daniel Powles of es with the end date to be confirmed; Daniel Powles of Moseley Town Colts (Coronation Football Sunday Moseley Town Colts (Coronation Football Sunday League). Suspended for six matches; Dale League). Suspended for six matches; Dale Norton of Farley Park Rangers (Warley Sunday League). SusFarley Park Rangers (Warley Sunday League). Suspended for 415 days.

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County FA discipline boss Mike Fellows
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Publication:Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England)
Date:Dec 14, 2014
Words:702
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