Clattenburg says ‘matter with lawyer’ after claim ref wanted Leicester title win
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Ex ref Mark Clattenburg has denied an incredible claim he once failed to send off a Leicester City player because he wanted them to win the league.
The Foxes stormed to a shock Premier League title in 2016, and ex-club player Danny Simpson claimed former referee Clattenburg gave them a helping hand en route to the crown. The 36-year-old, who played a starring role in Leicester's stunning achievement, alleged Clattenburg allowed a player to stay on the pitch although he should've been sent off, because the official said he was rooting for the Midlands club to bring the trophy home.
However, the allegation that Clattenburg declined to give a player a second yellow card in an unnamed fixture has been rubbished by the referee, who branded it "preposterous".
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Clattenburg told Sportsmail the allegations were "preposterous", stating: "I fully deny the allegations made by Danny Simpson. I find them preposterous. They are very serious and could question my integrity.
"To suggest I told a player that I wanted Leicester to win the league is ridiculous. It would have been picked up by our microphones.
"I did not book Danny Drinkwater during that season. His claims have absolutely no substance and I have no idea why, seven years later, he has chosen to say this. The matter is now with my lawyer."
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Simpson claimed on the Under The Cosh podcast: "I remember Clattenburg mate. Wow. I think he should've sent someone off. He said something like, 'I should've sent you off there but I want youse to win it.' Mate that was mad. That was mad you know, I swear to God.
"Good job there's no VAR but yeah. I had to pretend I didn't hear it. I was laughing my bollocks off inside and I thought, 'Yeah, we're doing this.'"
Upon reflection, Simpson remembered that former team-mate Danny Drinkwater was the culprit who should've been given his marching orders. He mused: "I think it was Drinky [Danny Drinkwater] actually. It was his second yellow or something and he could've easily sent him off but he didn't."
But although Simpson didn't mention what match it was that Clattenburg allegedly looked the other way, he marshalled four Foxes games in their title-winning campaign. Those were Claudio Ranieri's side's matches against Norwich which they won 2-1, and their clash against Chelsea which ended with the same result.
He also oversaw the Foxes' 2-2 draw against West Brom, plus the side's 4-0 drubbing of Swansea. However, he wasn't in charge of their final game of the 2015/16 season which they drew 1-1 with Man United.
Since Leicester's title-winning campaign, Clattenburg swapped life in the English top flight in 2017 to become the head of refereeing in Saudi Arabia amid stints in Greece and China. But his time in Eygpt was cut short as he was reportedly forced to flee due to rumours of him having a gay relationship circulated.
Simpson's career took a nosedive after clinching his Prem medal, and he was made to train with the Foxes U23 side the following season by Ranieri, who was labelled a cxxx for his treatment of the right-back by Jon Parkin. But the Englishman's been keeping match fit with a group of ex-Prem players since his last stint with Bristol City in 2022.
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