'Battle of Stamford Bridge' hearing delayed

October 2, 2008
By Soccernet staff

Patrice Evra's personal hearing for a charge of improper conduct relating to an incident at Chelsea on April 26 has been put back, the FA have confirmed.

GettyImagesThe French full-back has been punished by the FA.
The Manchester United defender was involved in a fracas, which also involved Chelsea groundsman Sam Bethell, after their Premier League defeat at Stamford Bridge last season.

However, after a preliminary hearing into the case last month, an independent regulatory commission ruled the FA did not have disciplinary jurisdiction over Bethell "as his employers, Chelsea FC, had failed to notify him that he was subject to the FA's rules and regulations".

This led to the charges against Bethell - which also included using abusive language aggravated by reference to nationality/race - being dismissed, and Chelsea subsequently were charged with "failure to include the required provisions in his employment contract".

Given the substitution of the original charges, it was decided the case against Evra would also be heard at a later date, together with Chelsea, most likely next month.

Chelsea have strenuously denied the charges, which also include a breach of FA rules for failing to ensure that Bethell conducted himself in an orderly fashion and/or refrained from any one or a combination of racist and/or abusive and/or provocative conduct and/or language.