Alan McCormack of Brentford Suspended 5 Games for aggravated abuse of officials
This story suddenly emerged this morning without warning. Following an FA hearing relating to Brentford fixture versus Cardiff in April 2016. He was found guilty of abusing officials and this was judged an aggravated breach due to reference to gender. On the EFL website the officials are all listed as male. Stuart Attwell, David Rock, Andrew Turner and Kevin Johnson. Why this has taken 5 months to be resolved seems an indictment of the FA processes.
He has been suspended for 5 games indicating the severity of the offence in the view of the FA. In addition fined £6000 and ordered to go on an unspecified education course.
Alan McCormack is a popular player amongst the Brentford fans however a quick look on social media comments just now has around 80% of Brentford fans critical of him. This may be harsh as the facts around the case are not known and neither club nor player are making further comment. So at the current time it is also unknown what the clubs view of this incident is and if an appeal is being considered. Put simply we are in the dark.
What we do know is that aggravated abuse suggests that more was said than might be usual in such cases . It is also interesting that the club has not made a quick statement of intent to appeal. As reference was made to gender and the officials it seems were all male there is only a limited number of potential abuse options.
Either way McCormack has done himself or the club no favours in being suspended at a critical part of the season. As a player I like his attitude on the pitch and his physicality undoubtedly is important in certain games to Brentford. No one would call him a skilful player but most agree he is an effective and well liked player.
At this stage it would be salient to await further facts before being too judgemental but the signs and scenarios do not look great. If the club does not sanction an appeal then this by itself is interesting . The further punishment of 6000£ is complex to interpret as presumably relates to the players wage. The attendance at an educational course further implies significant wrongdoing as to the nature and content of the abuse.
What is of no doubt is that the fans of Brentford and the team will lose out with the non-availability of McCormack for critical games likely to be physical including QPR and Fulham.