Riley backs Clattenburg as Rooney escapes ban



Mike Riley has backed Mark Clattenburg’s decision not to book or send off Wayne Rooney, as the FA decide not to take any action for the strikers apparent elbow on Saturday.

Rooney appeared to elbow Wigan’s James McCarthy in his team’s 4-0 win over Wigan on Saturday, and Clattenburg, despite appearing to see it, only gave a free kick to Wigan.

Rooney has escaped punishment after the FA decided not to take any action and Riley has backed his fellow official.

“Mark took the correct course of action with this incident,” said Riley

“Match officials are trained to prioritise following the ball, as that is where the greater majority of incidents are going to take place.

“However, we also do a lot of work around the area of peripheral vision to be aware of anything that might potentially happen off-the-ball.

“In this incident Mark was following play but caught sight of two players coming together and he awarded a free-kick because he believed one player had impeded the other.

“We should be clear that Mark did nothing wrong in officiating this incident as he acted on what he saw on the pitch.”

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