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Football: Killick calls for FA rethink over tackles (with video)
POOLE Town manager Tom Killick is calling on the Football Association to have a serious rethink over its disciplinary procedures.
Killick was speaking after Dolphins midfielder Glenn Howes had sustained a potentially career-threatening injury during Saturday’s 2-2 draw at Merthyr Town.
Howes was taken to the Prince Charles Hospital in Merthyr Tydfil after he had been caught on the left leg by a challenge from Martyrs’ Nathan Davies, who was immediately sent off.
Although X-rays showed the 29-year-old had not suffered a break, a further examination yesterday revealed cartilage and ligament damage.
Howes, who has been ruled out for the rest of this season, is expected to discover the full extent of the injury when he sees an orthopedic consultant on Friday.
The incident in the Southern League clash at Merthyr’s Penydarren Park came just a fortnight after Cherries defender Tommy Elphick had been the victim of an X-rated tackle from MK Dons striker Ryan Lowe.
Lowe received from the FA a mandatory three-match suspension for serious foul play, while Davies, who will be dealt with by the FA of Wales, is likely to be hit with a similar punishment. Retrospective penalties are not normally meted out for incidents dealt with by match officials.
Killick, speaking to the Daily Echo after he had reviewed a video of the tackle, said: “I thought it was extremely reckless and unnecessary. We were disappointed with the tackle and are concerned at the consequences it may have for Glenn, not just from a footballing perspective.
“Their player will receive a three-match ban and Glenn could be off work for a period of time. I think people have got to start looking at these tackles and the punishment should fit the crime.
“The authorities are meant to be clamping down on all sorts of things and rightly so. But it seems players can go around committing reckless challenges and nobody is distinguishing between them and mistimed tackles. There needs to be a bigger deterrent.
“They have got to start looking at each incident separately and there needs to be different categories of offences which come away from the standard punishments. I feel very strongly about that. I don’t see how an extreme offence can get the same punishment as a minor one.”
Killick highlighted as a case in point the recent example of Wimborne goalkeeper Jason Harvell who received a three-match ban for violent conduct – for throwing one of his gloves at an opponent.
Howes was last night too distressed to conduct an interview with the Daily Echo, although Killick said: “The doctors suspect he has suffered serious ligament and possibly meniscus damage. It is subject to confirmation as a full diagnosis was difficult due to the internal bleeding.”
Asked by the Daily Echo when he anticipated Howes making a comeback, Killick replied: “The most important thing now is the impact on him personally. That is the only real thing that matters.”
The non-league football fraternity took to social network site Twitter to send messages of good wishes to Howes with Wimborne, Sholing, Winchester City, Dorchester, Yate and Merthyr among them.
Merthyr chairman Meurig Price told the Daily Echo: “The tackle was a foul and it was a sending off. But it wasn’t as bad as it looked.
“Nathan said it was a clash of shins. He said he didn’t go in with his studs showing.
“Nathan is not that kind of player and would never go into a tackle to hurt another player.”