November 14, 2018 / 12:53 AM / a month ago

Soccer: Referee banned by FA after rock, paper, scissors blunder

FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Women’s Champions League Quarter Final First Leg - Manchester City vs Linkoping - Academy Stadium, Manchester, Britain - March 21, 2018 Manchester City's Steph Houghton Action Images via Reuters/Craig Brough/File Photo

LONDON (Reuters) - Referee David McNamara has been handed a three-week ban by the English FA for asking two captains to play rock, paper, scissors to decide the kick-off before a Women’s Super League (WSL) match after forgetting his coin, British media reported on Tuesday.

The incident took place ahead of Manchester City’s home game with Reading on Oct. 26 and involved their England skipper Steph Houghton and visiting captain Kirsty Pearce.

A coin toss to decide who kicks off is a requirement under the Laws of the Game but McNamara left his coin in the dressing room and allowed the captains to play rock, paper, scissors to determine kick off and playing ends, the BBC reported.

“The FA can confirm that referee David McNamara has been suspended for 21 days, starting from Monday 26 November, after accepting a charge of ‘not acting in the best interests of the game’, a FA spokesman was quoted as saying.

“This follows an incident in the FA WSL match between Manchester City and Reading on Friday 26th October when he failed to determine which team would kick off the match by the toss of a coin, as required by the Laws of the game.

McNamara, who has the right to appeal against the FA suspension will be able to return to duty from Dec. 17.

Writing by Ken Ferris; editing by Greg Stutchbury

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