Manchester City - Waving The Imaginary Card Must Stop
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Waving The Imaginary Card Must Stop

Roberto Mancini has every right to speak to the match officials when he thinks they have made a mistake but to wave imaginary cards when he thinks an opposition player deserves a red or yellow must stop.

The Italian said sorry when he waved the invisible card following Glen Johnson's two-footed challenge on Lescott last week but when Roberto repeated the incident at Wigan last night I have to say, I was fuming.

By all accounts it's acceptable to act in this manner over on the continent but it's regarded as ungentle-manly conduct on these shores. Please Bobby, can you stop.

Other comments

Skoorb - 'I love Mancini to bits - for his determination; for the way he has got the players to play football; for the success that he has brought and I would like little else than for him to remain as manager of the club for many years to come. I appreciate that the pressure is building as we turn towards the finishing line, that we have suffered some defeats, are missing key players through injury or other absence and have been on the end of some rough and inconsistent decisions from officials recently...'

'But am I alone in being frustrated at the image of him being highlighted standing at the side of the pitch making the imaginary card waving gesture?'

'Having done so after the penalty incident in the league game vs the dippers he immediately apologised and he went up in my estimation for doing so. I can only imagine his frustration at what to him, once again, seemed to be the wrong decision last night - I was frustrated and my job doesn't depend on what happens on the pitch.'

'I know he is passionate and lives the game as it is played but I fear he's likely only to continue to draw more attention onto himself and increase the pressure. The media are like school yard bullies. They seek or identify weaknesses, any little chinks in the armour and I have already heard this reaction being described as an indication that he's starting to 'crack'. We cannot afford to give our competitors any extra ammunition to fire at us & I fully expect Fergie to pick up on this when prompted by a 'seeded' question from on of his pet journalists...'

Many of you have commented on this very subject via the Gesture thread. Click here to read what fellow Blues have said.

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

The journalist

Writer: danielqpr Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Tuesday January 17 2012

Time: 11:08AM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
What's the difference between making a card waving gesture and screaming in a fourth official or linesman's face with your arms outstretched? What about standing on the sideline and making a gesture towards your watch when in injury time?
Report Abuse
17/01/2012 11:15:00

I take your points on board Bluedub - Fergie's gestures certainly spring to mind.
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17/01/2012 11:17:00

Don't get me wrong T, I don't like seeing this from any manager but why is everyone coming down so heavy on Mancini for this when we see similar from PL managers week in week out? Fair enough, we don't see card waving gestures but like I've said we see other types of gestures trying to influence officials.
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17/01/2012 11:22:00

British sense of "fair play" goes like this......You can say what you want to the referee, but don't mime it.
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17/01/2012 11:28:00

BlueDub - I have never seen a manager wave an imaginary card from the sidelines before. I felt his actions last night contradicted what he said about Wayne Rooney the previous week. I must say, Mancini is losing a lot of respect from Media, fans, managers and players alike. This is unwanted media attention to the club. Just because they say it's normal on the continent doesn't mean it's acceptable over here. Suarez ban in an example of this.
Report Abuse
17/01/2012 11:45:00

and their is a huge difference with pointing at a watch about injury time and waving a card to the officials, come on now Bluedub
Report Abuse
17/01/2012 11:46:00

Is there? Both are gestures attempting to influence an official. Mancini said Shrek influenced the ref, he was right, he did, no contradiction. Is it acceptable Batigol for managers to scream for frees, penalties, throw ins, corners? Is it acceptable to wave their hands around in disgust when they don't get their decision? Is it acceptable to leap off the bench in an aggressive manner to remonstrate with officials? Do you work for the Daily Fail?
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17/01/2012 11:54:00

I've read the responses to my post with interest and I think they're have been many valid points made particularly about cultural differences and other 'tactics' employed by Fergie in particular. The watch pointing is a classic. I actually don't think Mancini is trying to influence refs either over the incident which sparks him to react or in the future. I just think he is so incensed at what he sees as double standards & he can't understand what they are thinking. I just think that, just as Kompany left himself open to a card against the rags by the nature of his technique, Mancini is likewise attracting the wrong kind of attention and that is not what he or the club need. It just gives the media another stick to beat us with, the cameras will continue to focus on the bench when there is any contentious decision and raise a charge of hypocrisy. Whether that is accurate or not it sticks in the minds of other people. I think Mancini has done marvellously well in learning how to manage the media and become very aware of their verbal 'boobytraps'. I just think that this is another one and he needs to learn just as quickly or they will keep banging on about it.
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17/01/2012 12:05:00

This is just a distraction from the real issue, which is pizz poor refereeing.
Report Abuse
17/01/2012 12:07:00

For the nation that "won the war", we're certainly easily offended by these "johnny foreigners". It's not Mancini's job to be universally liked...leave that to Ant and's Mancini's job to highlight injustice and distract media attention from an average City performance. Only this.
Report Abuse
17/01/2012 12:30:00

Referees need to explain their decisions. So we all know.
buzz lightyear
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17/01/2012 12:32:00

Question is Buzz - Do they even know themselves? I can imagine one or two large ones being downed as the officials watch replays of the games and sit there thinking "Oh no, did I really do that?"
Report Abuse
17/01/2012 12:38:00

How cool would it be to see Moyles running out of the dugout waving imaginary cards? Or Tony Penis in his tracksuit chasing the 4th official demanding players to be sent off. We're so boring in this country. Forza Mancini
Report Abuse
17/01/2012 12:39:00

I'm with you Spooks.
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17/01/2012 12:49:00

Since the referee is usually many yards away from the touchline, the easiest way for a manager to say that an offense deserves a card is with a hand gesture. I have no problem with this. When a player does it while in a refs face, it's really a different case entirely. The red doesn't have to look to the touchline when making a decision. But a player in his face, he can't ignore. That being said, I really don't think ref's make decisions based on pressure from players or managers. If they do, they shouldn't be officiating.
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17/01/2012 12:58:00

If it had been a borderline tackle then I would have been upset...but it was an intentional handball in the middle of the pitch that prevented Aguero from going clear on goal. I dont' care how far from goal he was, Aguero was clear through as he's much faster than the player booked. It's a clear red card "in the letter of the law" (since everyone seems to love that quote in regards to Kompany) and he was as astonished as all of us when he wasn't sent off. I mean, how is that only a yellow? If the rules state you can't use your hands and a defender uses his hands to clearly prevent an attempt on goal, then why aren't the officials doing their jobs? I can understand missing the Glen Johnson tackle, as it happened quickly (and I didn't think it was a sending off anyway, but, "letter of the law" and all that...) but an intentional handball? Come on now. I think Mancini had every right to do it in that situation.
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17/01/2012 13:03:00

I'm sure Mancini is having terrible trouble sleeping at night knowing that he is losing the respect of "the media, fans, managers and players alike". Aw, bless. I hope he does it every game from now on just to ***** everyone off. The Imaginary Card Waving Mancini (TM), coming to a stadium near you....soon
Report Abuse
17/01/2012 13:38:00

I think for every foul against us on Sunday, the whole crowd should wave the classic imaginary card in unison. THE ITALIAN HIND JIVE.
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17/01/2012 14:16:00

LMAO, love it Spooks.
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17/01/2012 14:19:00

Half of the almost disbanded Emirates Bottlers used to card-goad refs week in week out without reaction in The Street of Shame. Boyata sent off versus Arsenal inside 3 mins at The Etihad and one Cesc Fabregas was at the controls with Clattenburg.
Johnny Baguette
Report Abuse
17/01/2012 14:43:00

And here they are now:

Report Abuse
17/01/2012 17:00:00

The lynchmob have had a field day today.Bad bad johnny foreigner waving the card.It's just not the English way.The English way(rughead,camel lips and stevie g(thug))is to harrass the ref and say to the ref"come on ref,are you going to send that tw-t off".We are up against a concerted effort from the media/FA/referees to derail our season because it is in their interests to see the scum win the league.Next week Mancini will get slagged off for something else.A City player will get sent off for handball, Evra will complain that a City fan in the third tier of the East stand racially abused him,Mario will get a 3 game ban for breaking wind and Redknapp will complain that we have not give him Tevez on a free transfer.Let's get behind Bobby on Sunday and f--k Talk Sport,Skychester utd,red mirror and the BENT FA.
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17/01/2012 19:19:00

all this Imaginary card waving, is not in the English Way, BUT is Players surrounding the referee and arguing the decision? it seems so, As Liverpool do it and the Rags Arsenal and Chelsea has in the past, SO IS THAT NEEDED TO BE OUTLAWED TOO, What Mancini did was wrong but so was the decision NOT to send the guy off, AND Mancini's Passion took over and got the better of him,Passion, is what i expect from any manager, so lets not make a mountain out of a mole hill....
Report Abuse
18/01/2012 14:09:00

I see no problem with managers waving red imaginary red cards whilts players can challenge a refs decision. The players are more likely to have an effect on the ref being in his face than a manager stood on the sideline.
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18/01/2012 20:52:00

The real problem here is the imaginary bit. If Mancini actually had a red and yellow card in his overcoat and produced the one he thinks the ref should give, we'd all be much better off.
Report Abuse
19/01/2012 21:49:00

To be honest its good to see Managers Showing a bit of Passion and emotion its all part of the theatre of the modern game . Mancini is a quality manager ,gracious in victory and defeat .
Report Abuse
20/01/2012 09:53:00

I see dear old 'arry has now joined in the slating of mancini. Bit cheeky for a man who will be in the dock on charges of tax evasion the morning after the game to be playing the holier than thou card doncha think?
Report Abuse
20/01/2012 15:00:00

That's some non-sequitur, which appears to be your speciality fifth.
Report Abuse
20/01/2012 19:38:00

'arry has (allegedly) cheated HMRC; he is bemoaning what he perceives as mancini's cheating. A grammarian you might be, a contrarian you most certainly are. One thing you ain't is a logician.
Report Abuse
20/01/2012 20:07:00

Au contraire fifth- Logically one cannot yet compare the two.
Report Abuse
20/01/2012 22:20:00

I actually think Mankini is quite charismatic, and I do like him for his passion, but saying something about a player/manager from another club, and then doing it himself is out of order.
I am more offended if a player did it, not the manager, but it shouldn't be done by anyone.

Report Abuse
21/01/2012 09:07:00

NW, he didn't criticise Rooney for doing it, he said he believed Kompany was sent off because Rooney did it, so what's out of order?
Report Abuse
21/01/2012 11:32:00

NW, he didn't criticise Rooney for doing it, he said he believed Kompany was sent off because Rooney did it, so what's out of order?
Report Abuse
21/01/2012 11:32:00

The day that referees are ordered to start booking players who surround them on the pitch, scream in their faces and wave imaginary cards is the day they can start having a pop at Mancini for his actions. But that won't happen, as the rags would lose 3-4 players for a game, for such trivialities as throw ins not going their way. The FA are amongst the biggest hyppocrites going, ande the fact is they simply cannot take mancini to task over this until they put their own house in order. Much easier to adopt the ostrich posture though, isn't it?
Report Abuse
21/01/2012 12:13:00


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