Update: “Fenerbahce’s Portuguese star Raul Meireles had his 11-match ban for spitting and allegedly making an offensive gesture at a referee reduced to four after a Turkish Football Federation appeal commission ruling.” From the Turkish federation: “As the player carried on talking throughout the entire incident, it would not have been physically possible for him to have spat.”

On Sunday I highlighted Andy Brassell’s piece on the controversy surrounding Raul Meireles’ red card during the Istanbul Derby.

The former Chelsea player accused referee Halis Ozkahya of inventing the accusations — mainly that the midfielder spat on Ozkahya. “It’s unbelievable, a suspension of so many games, and based on the referee’s lies,” Meireles told Lusa, Portugal’s main news agency. “I had access (to the report) and I was reading that he said I spat in his face. It’s a total lie. It also says that I made a gesture to him that meant he was gay.”

The video above documents the incident. Meireles was lucky to escape with just an 11 game ban.

Video via 101greatgoals

Comments (13)

  1. I love how he didn’t even know which side of his jersey the team emblem was on. Classic Meireles. While I didn’t see the mucus fly on the video, I don’t think the ref could have through it up so fast as to wipe his face almost immediately after. Deserved ban.

  2. Aw Raul! I am disappoint….

  3. Theres a different angle that tells a different story and shows he did not spit on him, but go head and present your argument without researching deeper into the incident.

    • ya, I’ve seen that one too. It seems like he says something (that starts with a P?) with extra emphasis, so it makes it look like spitting from some angles… and in a sense I guess it could be – by which I mean, sometimes when you say certain words in certain ways, spit is sprayed. Like when a boss is yelling in your face, kind of thing.

      The thing I find weird…the ref keeps his hands behind his back for 7 seconds after the spitting motion. Wouldn’t you want to wipe it off right away?

  4. I can’t believe certain apologists are trying to justify this somehow, as if whether he did or did not, intentionally or not, spit in the officials face matters. If a player gets that close in such an abusive manner that’s enough. If there is a question as to whether he spit, that is enough. This kind of behaviour should not be part of the game.

    I question whether anyone here would let some other abusive guy get that close to him and remain so calm in any other situation. Disgusting.

    • Bullshit. No one is justifying his actions; the other angle shows he did not spit intentionally in his face; the angle embedded here has been selected to make an argument not supported by other evidence. So it’s either dishonest or lazy blogging. Take your pick. Was meirrellas over the top? Yup. Was spit flying out his mouth into the face of the ref? Yup. Is that enough to ban him and condemn his behavior? Yup. Does it justify ignoring other evidence so you can write whatever you want? Nope

      Hey richie football: saw that Citeh won again 0-1. They keep this up, they’ll be world champs.

  5. He didn’t spit in his face. There is no evidence he spat in his face. The referee claimed Meireles called him gay in Portuguese when Meireles was speaking English (also, how the fuck would a Turkish ref know the word for gay in Portuguese?) It’s complete, utter bullshit.

    But, if FootyCounterBlogAttack says he deserves it, he deserves it. Right?

    • His actions throughout the game were outlandish and juvenile. The Counter Attack (me in actuality) is not the arbiter of truth, but I believe the suspension was warranted. Comporting yourself with class isn’t hard.

      • Well, the Turkish FA thought otherwise, absolving him of spitting or homophobia, and reducing the ban from 11 games to 4. It was gun-jumping in the greatest.

  6. Considering officials watched 6 hours of footage from various angles and determined he in fact did not spit at the referee, this blog is a disgrace. His ban was reduced to 4 games for agreesive behaviour towards the official.

  7. This video is an edited version to show as if he may be spitting. But he is not. The Appeals Board determined it was fake as well.

  8. Spitting or not, Meireles deserves an 11 match ban for that hairstyle alone.

  9. Yeah Devang, I normally enjoy most of what you write, but I think you are wrong on this one, both on your assessment and your approach.

    If you’ve seen other videos, you’ll know that he did not SPIT on the referee. And, as others have said, even though he WAS out of line, 11 games is ridiculous for something like this, especially when other players get one or two game suspensions for doing things much worse.

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