Chelsea boss Tuchel risks FA charge over referee comments

The German was informed about a supporter-led petition demanding Taylor be removed from future Chelsea games following the ill-tempered 0-0 draw with Liverpool in August that saw Reece James sent off.

More than 80,000 fans signed the online poll.

Tuchel dismissed any concerns about Taylor when asked about the referee on Friday – but his comments could still be deemed a breach of FA Rule E3.1, which holds a number of potential penalties including a charge and fine.

The Chelsea manager said on Friday: “I trust in the referees and I trust in Anthony Taylor that he will try to have the best performance.

“Do we need a top referee? Yes. Do we need good decisions from VAR or maybe no decisions from VAR? Yes. Do we need a little bit of luck? Yes. And, hopefully, we can turn things around with Anthony Taylor.”

While Tuchel was not critical of Taylor, managers are not permitted to discuss officials before games.

FA guidance states: “Any pre-match comments in the media or on social media concerning an appointed match official, whether they are identified by name or implication, will be treated as a breach of FA Rule E3.1.”

Tuchel is likely to be warned about future conduct, rather than receive more severe punishment.

Pep Guardiola was warned by the FA over comments he made about Taylor in 2018 ahead of a Manchester derby – but Jose Mourinho was fined £50,000 two years early over remarks he made about the same referee before a Manchester United clash with Liverpool.

Mourinho had previously been warned about comments made about an official.

Tuchel’s previous good record since taking over at Chelsea in January means his is unlikely to be heavily penalised, but he may be asked to explain his remarks.

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