‘They've decided you can punch players on the football pitch and get away with it’ – Bristol Rovers boss frustrated Portsmouth striker will go unpunished by FA

Graham Coughlan spoke of his frustration after the FA  decided not to take disciplinary action against James Vaughan.

Thursday, 21st February 2019, 12:45 pm
Updated Thursday, 21st February 2019, 1:49 pm
Tom Lockyer was allegedly punched by James Vaughan during Tuesday night's draw. Picture: Robin Jones

The Bristol Rovers boss believes the Pompey striker should be punished for allegedly punching Tom Lockyer.

The Gas skipper went down in the 72nd minute during the 1-1 draw at Fratton Park on Tuesday night. 

Off the ball, Lockyer fell to ground holding his face – but referee Neil Heir saw nothing wrong and a card wasn’t issued.

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Rovers sent video footage to the FA hoping they would charge Vaughan. 

The on-loan Wigam forward avoided any punishment, however, and is available for Saturday’s crunch promotion clash against Barnsley. 

And Coughlan can’t fathom the FA’s decision.

He told BBC Radio Bristol: ‘They've (the FA) decided you can punch players on the football pitch and get away with it.

Tom Lockyer was allegedly punched by James Vaughan during Tuesday night's draw. Picture: Robin Jones

‘Four officials missed it at the time. The fourth official should have seen it as he is right down my eyeline and I've seen it.

‘The FA have told us they won't be taking any action against what's gone on - that's fine.

‘But once that happens, I hope we're not setting a precedent that it's one rule for one (and not for another). 

‘Every proper football fan in the country will look at what I've seen and have their own thought process on what's going on.

‘I guarantee every one will be thinking along the same lines as myself.’