Hold that tweet, English footballers. It might just land you in trouble with the Football Association.
Earlier this week the FA, the governing body of English football, announced a new code of conduct for members of the English national team. Among other guidelines, the new code will reportedly provide the FA's stance on discrimination and players' use of social media.
Here's the kicker, though. The FA has said the new rules have nothing to do with the timely indiscretions of John Terry and Ashley Cole.
From The Guardian:
England's senior squad were presented with the code on Monday night in a 10-minute presentation after gathering at the FA's new £105m national training centre, St George's Park, in Staffordshire ahead of Friday's World Cup qualifier against San Marino.
The FA was keen to stress that the code of conduct, which encompasses rules on discrimination and the use of social media, had been in development since January and there was no direct link with the Terry or Cole cases.
Terry, the former captain of England and current captain of Premier League leaders Chelsea, drew a four-match ban from the FA late last month (via BBC Sport). The ban stemmed from an incident of alleged racism in 2011 involving Terry and Queens Park Rangers defender Anton Ferdinand, who is black.
This week, Cole drew an FA charge over a tweet that used on offensive term to describe the FA. Cole later deleted the tweet, apologized and avoided a ban (via BBC Sport).
Coincidentally, the FA's new code of conduct covers both areas, but as blog Who Ate All the Pies joked, it didn't have anything to say about awkward meetings between England players and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge (better known as Will and Kate).
But, hey, even this cloud has a silver lining. With Robbie Fowler out of the picture these last 10 years, there's been no need to remind players not to snort the endline.