Wolves Sporting Director handed one-match ban for swearing at referee

Matt Hobbs: Appointed Wolves Sporting Director in November last year

Matt Hobbs: Appointed Wolves Sporting Director in November last year

WOLVES Sporting Director Matt Hobbs has been handed a one-game suspension and fined £4,000 for calling referee Anthony Taylor “absolutely f****** useless” after the 2-2 Premier League draw against Newcastle United at Molineux on October 28th.

A hearing earlier this month heard that Hobbs had passed Taylor as he was leaving the field and said: “Absolutely f****** useless as usual.”

The referee later outlined to Hobbs that his attitude and behaviour were unacceptable, to which he, and assistant referees Adam Nunn and Gary Beswick, allege Hobbs replied: “We look forward to your apology again.”

There had been a contentious VAR call during the game, in which Hwang Hee-chan was adjudged to have fouled Newcastle defender Fabian Schar, with Callum Wilson scoring the resulting penalty.

The commission said Hobbs had expressed remorse over the incident - which he admitted - but added his conduct "clearly fell below the expected standard".

Hobbs said he had become "increasingly frustrated" at decisions in the game, which he felt "exacerbated two incorrect decisions earlier in the season".

Hobbs was charged with misconduct for a breach of FA Rule E3.1 and issued a punishment of a one-match ban, which he has already served, as well being handed a £4,000 fine.

Wolves have been at the centre of VAR controversy on several occasions this season, including in their opening-day defeat by Manchester United in August and in their last Premier League match, a 3-2 defeat at Fulham on Monday.

It is highly unusual for a Sporting Director to be given a suspension such as this. Hobbs first joined the club in 2015 as scout for the south-west of England and went on to become Head of Emerging Talent, Head of Academy Recruitment, Chief Scout and Head of Recruitment.

He was appointed Sporting Director in November last year, succeeding Scott Sellars, and took on "management of the sporting and performance departments at the club."

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