James McClean could be in trouble with Fifa... just as he predicted
James McClean's comments about the referee of the Republic of Ireland's 1-1 draw against Austria could come back to bite him in the ass.
After the final whistle blew in the Aviva Stadium on June 11, James McClean was the first player to be interviewed by RTE during their live broadcast of the world cup qualifier.
Clearly disgruntled with the referee's performance, McClean let loose on the officiating of the game despite admitting that such comments could land him in trouble.
"Look, I know in this day and age, the slightest wee thing you say about a referee, you get fined and that, but you watched the game, you tell me."
"They had a 12th man today. That’s all I’ll say on that. I’m really disappointed. We should have came away from that game with three points but we didn’t."
It looks like his prediction may have been correct.
— SportsJOE (@SportsJOEdotie) June 11, 2017
In a statement released to the Times Ireland edition, a FIFA spokesperson said:
"We can confirm that disciplinary proceedings have been opened for such statements. Be informed that two cases were opened: one against James McClean and another one against the coach Martin O’Neill. Please understand that we can’t make any further comments since the matter is ongoing."
O'Neill tore into the referee speaking to RTE after the game, claiming that Shane Duffy's goal being disallowed towards the end of the match typified the referee's performance.
"It is a goal, there's absolutely nothing wrong with it. I personally think that typified the referee's performance today. He let a lot of things go. If that's the case, then well let this go, if he's calling a foul on Shane Duffy. I can't see it. I can't see it. The linesman has thought he's given the goal and he's almost up at the halfway line before he's called back."
We'll keep you updated as the story progresses.