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Heaton red could lead to overhaul of FA rules
TOM Heaton’s contentious dismissal at Brighton could lead to the way double bookings are dealt with.
Under the current rules, unlike a straight red card, a sending off for two bookable offences cannot be challenged and the player must serve a one-match ban.
But as Heaton prepares to come back into Burnley’s line-up at Derby County today, after missing the midweek cup win over Preston North End through suspension, manager Sean Dyche said the controversy surrounding the incident could lead to a change in football law.
“I spoke to the FA and to their credit they are going to look at that now,” said Dyche, whose side played the final half-hour with 10 men at Brighton following cautions for the keeper in either half, contributing to a first defeat of the season.
Dyche took issue with the second booking, after Heaton was accused of re-handling the ball, when Will Buckley had got his head to a fluffed throw in the area.
“I mentioned afterwards whether it was something that needed looking at because it was a factually wrong decision.
“We lose a player for that and don’t feel that’s appropriate.
“They did say they are discussing the idea (of being able to appeal a double booking).
“I don’t know if you’ll see an incident like that again. I’ve certainly never seen anything like that in my career.
“But they have said they will look into that idea, although they couldn’t affect this one because of legislation, but if that scenario happens again.
“The thing that drives us mad as managers is statistically the game is affected because it’s 11 v 10.
“If you look over 100 games there aren’t many times when the 10 beats the 11, so of course it affects the outcome.
“Then it possibly affects the next outcome because we’ve lost a player we shouldn’t have, so not only do you lose the game but you lose the player, and that’s where it’s unfair.
“We all know decisions get made and sometimes they’re wrong. We’re all human, it’s a very difficult sport to get every decision right.
“Last week’s was wrong on every level.”
It’s not the first time Dyche has had to take issue with a double booking, after being reduced to 10 men in last seasons’s FA Cup third round defeat at Barnsley after Brian Stock was the victim of mistaken identity.
Stock was penalised for a foul that had been committed by Michael Duff and wrongly booked, after earlier picking up a legitimate yellow card.
“We just hope they even themselves out at some point,” he said.
“My glass is always half full.
“Who knows, we might have done our little bit of good for the officiating of the game.”
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