They just want robot managers - Warnock questions FA following fine

Neil Warnock accused the Football Association (FA) of being "a bit out of order" with the process that led to him being fined £20,000 for comments about refereeing standards in the Premier League.

The Cardiff City boss described officials working in the top tier as "the worst" in the world following his side's 2-1 loss to Chelsea on March 31.

Warnock was aggrieved that Cesar Azpilicueta's 84th-minute equaliser was allowed to stand, despite the scorer clearly being in an offside position, and he argued that two big penalty shouts for the Bluebirds were also rejected by referee Craig Pawson.

He was charged with three offences relating to comments made to broadcasters and, after requesting a personal hearing this week, all three charges were upheld by the FA.

Despite feeling aggrieved with the decision, claiming that some of his peers have escaped punishment when making similar remarks this season, Warnock has begrudgingly accepted his punishment. 
 
"There's no point in taking it any further. I have to take it on the chin," he told the media on Friday.

"I'm disappointed in the first two charges. I didn't think they warranted being proven guilty, not when we showed them an article what [Chelsea head coach Maurizio] Sarri had said about referees less than three weeks ago and he never got a charge.

"When you get an institute like the FA, as big as it is, I find it disappointing that they're allowed to bring in an outside barrister to prove the case against me.

"He had all the information on what my arguments are three to four weeks before and [time to] get his head around it. It's a bit out of order if I'm honest.

"They just want robot managers; the humour has gone out of the game."

Cardiff have lost four of their last five matches since the defeat to Chelsea and now require victories in their final two matches, at home to Crystal Palace and away to Manchester United, if they are to have any hope of avoiding a return to the Championship.

Warnock's side go up against Wilfried Zaha in Saturday's must-win clash - a player whose career he helped revive during his time in charge at Selhurst Park.

Zaha returned to Palace after failing to make an impact at Manchester United, but Warnock believes the forward - who also previously spent half a season on loan with Cardiff - will find his way to a "top club" in Europe.

"Wilfried wasn’t in a good place when he came back from Manchester United," Warnock said. "I met him in the chairman's office and I had half an hour with him. It was obvious he felt let down by Manchester United and when I spoke to him I could understand why he felt that.

"He was only a young lad and he needed help - an arm around the shoulder. But it didn't appear he got any of that.

"But that's what you do - you go away and rekindle that enthusiasm. He's always had tremendous skill and now he's showing people his worth. He will end up at one of the top clubs in Europe."

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