By Danny Caro
May 7, 2009
Avram Grant. Remember him? Still the only man to take Chelsea to a Champions League final.
While referee Tom Ovrebo has been struck off the Christmas card list of every Chelsea supporter, the conduct of German captain Michael Ballack and Didier Drogba, who was off the pitch having been substituted, must be punished by Uefa.
Two of the most high-profile players in the Premier League lost their cool, chasing the match official to protest and vent their anger at several decisions they felt he had got wrong.
Ballack and Drogba are role models to children worldwide. Their actions were unacceptable with Ballack clearly man-handling the ref. If this had happened at local league level, I know some bodies who would ban him from the game.
And with the recent spitting accusation from Hull City aimed at Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas, who like Drogba was not playing but was allowed to return to the pitch, I believe that lessons should be learnt and that subs or players sent off should not be allowed to return to the field of play, even to shake the hand of their opponent.
And while Darren Fletcher and Eric Abidal were harshly sent-off, I think Uefa should reconsider those decisions but come down hard and make an example of Drogba and Ballack, otherwise, their actions will be replicated lower down the ladder as it must be the same rule for everyone.