Football

Johnson asked to explain 'disgrace' comments by FA

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Birmingham defender Roger Johnson has been asked by the FA to explain his claim that referee Martin Atkinson was "a disgrace".

The club have been charged with failing to control their players following the angry scenes near the end of their derby defeat by Aston Villa sparked by Atkinson awarding a penalty against Johnson.

Blues defender Stephen Carr has also been charged with improper conduct for allegedly making an offensive gesture to Villa fans at the end of the match. West Midlands Police are also expected to question Carr over the incident.

The match at Villa Park was decided when Atkinson penalised Johnson for a challenge on Gabriel Agbonlahor with eight minutes remaining and James Milner scored from the spot.

TV replays showed the defender had got a touch on the ball and Johnson said afterwards: "The referee was a disgrace. He's ruined the match and clearly shouldn't be doing these kind of games - it was too big for him.

"I got the ball cleanly, everyone could see that, and the ref can't make a decision if he's not sure. The rules say if you're not sure, you don't give a penalty."

The FA said in a statement: "Birmingham City FC have been charged with failing to ensure their players conducted themselves in an orderly fashion, relating to the players' behaviour towards referee Martin Atkinson following the awarding of a spot-kick to Aston Villa late in the fixture.

"Birmingham City defender Stephen Carr has been charged with improper conduct following an incident at the end of the same fixture.

"Meanwhile Roger Johnson, also of City, has been asked to explain comments made to the media after the fixture in relation to referee Martin Atkinson."

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Topics:
Roger Johnson
Football
Premier League
Birmingham

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