Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta escapes punishment for Newcastle comments as FA explain decision


Mikel Arteta has escaped punishment from the FA for comments he made after Arsenal's loss to Newcastle last month. An independent regulatory commission found the alleged charge brought against the Spaniard to be not proven.

Arteta hit out at the performance of the officials and VAR when speaking to the media following the match at St James' Park on November 4. Newcastle won the game 1-0 thanks to a controversial second-half goal from Anthony Gordon.

Arteta claimed the decision to award the goal was "embarrassing" and a "disgrace". VAR ruled that the goal should stand as they were unable to find a clear reason to disallow it on three counts.

The FA charged Arteta on November 16, alleging his comments "constitute misconduct as they are insulting towards match officials and/or detrimental to the game and/or bring the game into disrepute." Arteta faced a potential fine and touchline ban if found guilty.

However, the FA confirmed this afternoon that the 41-year-old had been cleared. They were unable to find evidence that Arteta was guilty of the charge brought upon him.

A statement from the FA reads: "An independent Regulatory Commission has found the charge against Mikel Arteta for an alleged breach of FA Rule E3.1 to be not proven.

"The manager was charged following various comments in media interviews after Arsenal’s Premier League game against Newcastle United on Saturday 4 November.

"It was alleged that his comments constituted misconduct in that they were insulting towards match officials and/or detrimental to the game and/or brought the game into disrepute."

Arsenal released a statement the day after the defeat to Newcastle, backing their manager's comments from the previous evening. The Gunners called the decisions from the referees and VAR "unacceptable" and urged for the PGMOL "to address the standard of officiating".

Arsenal felt there was enough evidence for Gordon's goal to be ruled out. VAR, however, were unable to prove that the ball had crossed the byline before Joe Willock crossed for Gordon to score.

VAR also disagreed with claims that Joelinton fouled Gabriel in the build-up to the goal. VAR were also unable to draw accurate lines to determine whether Gordon was offside from Joelinton's assist.

Arteta will be breathing a sigh of relief that he has avoided a touchline ban. He recently had to watch from the stands for Arsenal's 1-0 loss at Aston Villa after picking up his third yellow card of the season in the dramatic late win at Luton.

Arteta will be in the dugout for Sunday's Premier League match at home to Brighton. Arsenal then travel to Anfield the following Saturday to play Liverpool.

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