Sam Allardyce charged by FA

Sam Allardyce, the West Ham United manager, has been charged with misconduct over comments to the media in which he accused referee Phil Dowd of favouring Manchester United with key decisions in Wednesday’s FA Cup defeat at Old Trafford.

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Allardyce said that Dowd had awarded a penalty to Manchester United but denied West Ham a spot kick in similar circumstances because the game was at Old Trafford, and suggested he lacked the “courage” required to do his job at the ground.

Under Football Association rules players and managers are forbidden from accusing match officials of bias, though they can comment on their performance. In a statement, the FA said Allardyce has until next Wednesday to respond to the charge.

West Ham lost the match 1-0 to a Wayne Rooney goal, but Allardyce’s comments stem from the award of a penalty that the England striker missed. United were awarded the spot kick in the second half after Jordan Spence handled the ball.

Before half-time, however, West Ham had an appeal for a penalty turned down when full-back Rafael appeared to handle the ball in similar fashion.

Speaking on ITV after the match, Allardyce said: “There’s no doubt about the difference between Rafael’s handball and Spence’s. Spence plays for West Ham and the away team, while Rafael plays for the home side at Old Trafford. You see it time and time again at Old Trafford.”

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