Football fans have long debated the idea of a rugby-style sin bin being introduced into the game, but now it seems the idea isn’t as ridiculous as imagined with one former Premier League referee saying it has been debated at the highest level.

Talking to UCFB students as part of the Executive Guest Speaker Series at Wembley Stadium, Chris Foy, who officiated over 250 games in the Premier League, suggested the idea as a possible future rule change. Like all rules of the game though, the law would have to be passed by the International Football Association Board (IFAB).

Asked what rule he would like to see changed or introduced in the game, Foy said: “I’m a rugby league fan, and I know it’s something they’ve talked about recently at the IFAB, and that’s sin bins. Whether it would work or not I’m not sure. I know it’s been on the agenda for a while so we’ll see if they introduce it.”

He added: “If they don’t, I’m not that precious because what we’ve got at the moment is a really good product and we all love our national game, so let’s leave it as it is.”

Speaking to students about his career which saw him take charge of an FA Cup and League Cup final at Wembley, Foy, who’s now a senior referees’ coach for the Professional Game Match Officials Board, also poured cold water on the idea of officials coming out and speaking to press after a game to discuss decisions made during a match.

Foy suggested that the much promoted idea, at least by the press pack, would jeopardise any future FA disciplinary hearings resulting from a game. He said: “We’ve got to be really careful with hot issues as The FA might become involved in the situation with regards to disciplinary proceedings in the future. We’re conscious of that and it’s not in the benefit of due process to come out and talk about incidents that have happened in matches which might be subject to further disciplinary proceedings.”

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