Nov 23, 2012

Mikel Obi charged with misconduct in alleged racial row

Chelsea midfielder John Mikel Obi has been charged by the FA over the Mark Clattenburg race row after the referee was found to have no case to answer.

Mikel accused Clattenburg of using racist language towards him during Chelsea’s defeat to Manchester United last month.

Mikel was charged for alleged use of threatening and/or abusive and/or insulting words and/or behaviour in or around the officials changing room.

No action: Mark Clattenburg has no case to answer while John Mikel Obi (right) has been charged by the FA

The Nigerian stormed into the ref’s room after the match after being told by team-mate Ramires that Clattenburg had called him a ‘monkey’. Mikel did not hear anything at the time.

He does not deny the charge but will request a personal hearing to explain the mitigating circumstances. There has been no apology from the club.

Clattenburg hasn’t refereed a game since and is now clear to return to official duty. He will be named on Friday for one of the fixtures next midweek.

He spoke of his relief and said the last few weeks had been ‘the most stressful of his life’.

Clattenburg said: ‘I am looking forward to putting this behind me and concentrating on refereeing in the Premier League and other competitions.

‘I am extremely grateful for the invaluable support of my family, my Select Group colleagues, the management of Professional Game Match Officials Limited and our union Prospect. The messages of encouragement from those inside and outside of the gamehave helped me through the most stressful time of my professional life.