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Followers of Chelsea are urged not to fall for the Football Association’s latest ploy to silence the vocal minority who oppose their campaign against the club.
The governing body have reduced Nemanja Matic’s three-match ban for self-defence against Burnley to two matches on appeal.
It’s a reaction that has rightly left Stamford Bridge “appalled”, as the FA could and should have reduced Matic’s suspension by a further game (the maximum amount allowed).
Clarets striker Ashley Barnes, whose attempted murder of the wouldn’t-hurt-a-fly midfielder’s career sparked that out-of-character reaction, will be allowed to return to the world of football as a free man.
At first glance it looks like just another example of the football establishment’s anti-Chelsea bias, yet the ruling may actually be far more sinister.
Having reduced the Serbian’s ban by one game, Soho Square will ensure that he returns for the home clash against high-flying Southampton.
This is sure to appease more naive members of the Blues faithful, who would much rather have him back against the Saints than for the trip to hopeless Hull.
However, the only real beneficiaries of this supposed concession are Liverpool.
Allowing Matic to return for the Southampton clash will ensure that, barring further conspiracies, the south coast side are sent packing without a point for their efforts.
In turn this will allow Brendan Rodgers’ men the opportunity to overhaul them in the race for fourth spot, for which they are currently 19/10.
Chelsea were already a club under siege, ruthlessly undermined and destabilised at every possible opportunity by referees and the media alike.
Now it seems that may not be enough for the Football Association, who seem hell bent on using the Blues as a tool to promote their sinister and long-held ambition to return Liverpool to the top of the league.