Howard Webb: Feigning injury could cost lives

Howard Webb
© PA Photos
Howard Webb calls for players to stop feigning injury following Fabrice Muamba's cardiac arrest earlier this year.

Premier League referee Howard Webb has issued a warning to all footballers, claiming that feigning injury could cause match officials to slowly react in dangerous situations.

The Yorkshire-born former policeman has been speaking for the first time about Bolton Wanderers midfielder Fabrice Muamba's cardiac arrest, which was suffered during an FA Cup clash between the Trotters and Tottenham Hotspur, which Webb was officiating.

"The fact that he wasn't rolling around screaming in agony, the way he went down with no contact, meant immediately it was serious," said Webb. "And it was not only me - the players recognised it. You see William Gallas's reaction - an opposing player - immediately waving to the bench to come on.

"If the game had not been stopped within 20 or 30 seconds, that might have made a difference to his chances of recovery.

"One of our obligations as a referee is to try and observe fair play and keep the game flowing when we can. But, if players cry wolf too many times, then there is a possibility that maybe we will not react in the way we need to do based on what we saw there."

Former Chelsea striker Didier Drogba was one player accused of using fake injuries as a tactical ploy during the Premier League this season.

Kevin Davies
Read Next:
End-of-season report: Bolton Wanderers
>



You May Like
Recomended from Sports Mole
Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
CSheffield UnitedSheff Utd452910689454497
2Bolton WanderersBolton4524111065362983
3Fleetwood Town4523121064432181
4Scunthorpe UnitedScunthorpe4523101277532479
5Bradford CityBradford452018761421978
6Millwall451913136254870
7Southend UnitedSouthend4519121469531669
8Rochdale451911157061968
9Oxford UnitedOxford Utd451991763521166
10Bristol Rovers451812156566-166
11Peterborough UnitedPeterborough451711176259362
12MK Dons451513175657-158
13Walsall451416155054-458
14Charlton AthleticCharlton451318145753457
15AFC Wimbledon451317155255-356
16Northampton TownNorthampton451410216073-1352
17Oldham AthleticOldham451216173144-1352
18Shrewsbury TownShrewsbury451312204661-1551
19Bury451311216172-1150
20Gillingham451213205979-2049
21Port Vale451212214570-2548
RSwindon TownSwindon451111234463-1944
RCoventry CityCoventry45912243665-2939
RChesterfield45910264175-3437
LIVE SCORES VIDEPRINTER
expand