Dave Whelan ruling looks like a joke but is serious matter for Wigan owner

The 78-year-old has been shamed forever by a sanction which ultimately may be unenforceable by the FA
Dave Whelan banned by FA for six weeks after Guardian interview

Heard the one about the Englishman (two of them, in fact), the South American and the Frenchman? No, it is not a joke and there is no punchline but, equally, you will recognise what they have in common and what is becoming a recurring theme of these disciplinary hearings involving the Football Association’s independent commissions.

Dave Whelan is just the latest, following John Terry, Luis Suárez and Nicolas Anelka, in facing what the FA describes as an “aggravated” offence, leading to them being banned and disgraced and yet, simultaneously, given the benefit of the doubt. Each time the FA has been at pains to point out it does not consider the offender is actually racist, and one of these days perhaps it could explain what level of behaviour does constitute that tag if “fucking black cunt” does not do it for Terry, or the aggressive Spanish use of “negro” in the case of Suárez, or Anelka’s quenelle and now Dave Whelan with a line of embarrassing blather and old stereotypes that would not have looked out of place with Jim Davidson’s Chalky White routine.

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