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Former Chelsea player ‘swung’ for referee after telling him ‘he wanted to break his legs’



(Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)

Former referee Mark Clattenburg has revealed ex-Chelsea player John Obi Mikel swung for him in the officials’ room post-match once.

Back in 2012, Chelsea and Manchester United went head-to-head in a heated and controversial affair at Stamford Bridge.

The visitors took a two nil lead in the capital but Juan Mata and Ramires struck Chelsea level. However, Javier Hernandez snatched a late winner to inflict defeat on the then Champions League holders, who were also down to nine men.

Branislav Ivanovic was sent off for fouling Ashley Young, while Fernando Torres was given a second yellow after Clattenburg viewed the Spain international to have dived, although replays showed defender Jonny Evans making contact with him.

It didn’t go down well with the Chelsea contingent and the complaints continued past the full-time whistle.

Obi Mikel was handed a three-game ban after admitting a charge having confronted Clattenburg, who Mikel accused had racially abused him, in the referee’s room post-match.

“Chelsea’s John Obi Mikel has been given a three-match suspension to begin with immediate effect and fined £60,000 following an Independent Regulatory Commission hearing today [Thursday 6 December 2012],” an FA statement read.

“Mikel had requested a personal hearing after admitting an FA charge of using threatening and/or abusive and/or insulting words and/or behaviour.”

There are now calls for Fulham’s Aleksandar Mitrovic to receive a lengthy ban for pushing Chris Kavanagh during their 3-1 defeat to Man United in the FA Cup quarter-finals at the weekend.

Clattenburg commented on the incident, however also revealed that Mikel swung for him and what the words said in the room back in 2012 were.

In his column for the Daily Mail, Clattenburg wrote: “Chelsea’s John Mikel Obi once swung at me in the referee’s room at Stamford Bridge.

“He screamed he wanted to break my legs and was being held back by Roberto Di Matteo and Eddie Newton.

“In the end, Mikel only received a three-match ban for that incident. I thought, ‘Are the FA taking the p***? He should be banned for the rest of the season, if not more’.

“Mitrovic wasn’t as aggressive as Mikel, but he got physical with Kavanagh. The FA may now use him to set an example to others.

‘Referees need to be respected at the highest level because if they aren’t, that impacts what happens at the lowest level.”