LONDON: The English Football Association (FA) has issued guidelines allowing referees to show red or yellow cards to players who deliberately cough at match officials or opponents in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a Sky Sports report, the FA said action should be taken when "the referee is certain someone deliberately, and from close range, coughed into the face of an opponent or match official".
It added that the offence would fall under the category of "using offensive, insulting or abusive language and/or gestures".
"If the incident was not severe enough to merit a sending-off, a caution could be issued for 'unsporting behaviour - shows a lack of respect for the game'."
Arsenal recently won a record-extending 14th FA Cup title after beating Chelsea 2-1 in the final at the Wembley Stadium last Saturday.
Chelsea's hopes of getting an equaliser were dented when midfielder Mateo Kovacic received a second yellow card in the 73rd minute of the match for a rather soft foul on Granit Xhaka. They ended the match with nine players after Pedro had to be stretchered off due to an injury.
Chelsea, who finished 10 points above Arsenal in the Premier League this season, were dominant in the opening proceedings with Pulisic becoming the first American to score in an FA Cup final. IANS
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