The Toffees will face the Red Devils in their first game since being hit with a huge 10-point deduction for breaching the Premier League’s profit and sustainability rules - the biggest points punishment in the league’s history.
Both the club and its fans have felt the punishment to be too harsh, and supporters are expected to voice their frustration by organising a protest during the fixture. The Times reports that Everton fans will chant: “Premier League corrupt as f***,” ten minutes into the game.
However, Ofcom’s rules state that broadcasters should avoid televising material that is offensive to viewers. That is especially relevant given the 4.30pm kick-off time, which means a large number of families and children will be watching.
Sky Sports has therefore held an internal meeting to address the issue and will move to take responsibility in order to mitigate the offensive language heard on air. The broadcaster on previous occasions has reduced the volume of the crowd noise and even used pre-recorded sounds from fans.
Everton fan group ‘the 1878s’ have reportedly raised more than £40,000 to fund protests. They are understood to be planning to fly a plane with a banner over Manchester City’s clash with Liverpool on Saturday - as it will be too dark during Everton’s match this weekend.
Do you think Everton's punishment was too extreme? Let us know in the comments section.
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It comes after Everton’s director of football Kevin Thelwell broke his silence on Wednesday by calling the points deduction a “wholly disproportionate” penalty. With Sean Dyche’s men sliding down to 19th in the table and facing another relegation battle, the club confirmed it will appeal the decision while seemingly alluding to Manchester City’s 115 charges for breaking financial rules.
A statement from Thelwell read: “The clear and tangible impact on our league position because of that ruling is clear to see in the Premier League table. We return to action five places lower than the 14th position held following our hard-fought victory over Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park.
“The three points from that victory may no longer be accounted for in the table - nor seven other hard-earned points amassed during this season. But what does remain in place is the unity, focus and determination that helped earn those points on the field of play - now supplemented by the additional fuel of what we believe is a wholly disproportionate ruling.
“We are rallying in the face of a sporting sanction in the only way we can - and that is our focus and hard work in supporting the team in delivering to their fullest on the pitch.”