Unnamed interlocutor: "Looks like Ashley Cole [who plays for Man United's arch-rival Chelsea] is going to be their choc ice. Then again, he's always been a sell-out. Shame on him."
Ferdinand: ""I hear you fella! Choc ice is classic! hahahahahahha!!"
(In racial terms, "Choc ice" is to the English what "Oreo" is to Americans.)
(Even worse, but beside the point here, is that the local police are prosecuting Ferdinand for a criminal violation for that tweet. When did England give up being a free country? And are these pro soccer players so delicate that words like this can be so offensive as to warrant the expenditure of public moneys on the ponderous activity of the police?)
But this week comes another example of the FA's unsurpassed capacity to make something controversial out of something ordinary and unremarkable.
In an exciting match on Saturday between Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur, two teams that are very close competitors, the match officials made what seemed to many to be a wrong call, in favour of Tottenham and detrimental to Newcastle. Alan Pardew, the manager (head coach) of Newcastle, was standing on the sideline, watching, and he was quite naturally agitated by what he saw. He turned and said something to someone behind him, then immediately turned the other way to say something to the linesman (or referee's assistant to the politically correct). The linesman, it turns out, was standing just a couple feet away, looking down the line, and Pardew reached over, shouted "Hey" (or maybe "Oy!" --- he is English, after all) and starts to comment excitedly about the call.
Well, of course the game had to come to a complete halt while the referee came over and sent Pardew to the stands for this trivial incident, and now the FA has announced misconduct charges over the incident.
Why is it that highly-paid administrators such as the FA has are so completely unable to exercise any sort of reasonable discretion? I understand the perceived need to protect soccer officials from violent attacks by team managers (and everyone else), but I would have thought that these mature individuals would be able to distinguish a tap on the shoulder from a violent shove.