Premier League: 10 Biggest Scandals of All Time

Andrew Jordan@@Andrew_JordanSenior Writer INovember 1, 2011

Premier League: 10 Biggest Scandals of All Time

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    The last several weeks have seen the Premier League get rocked with a racism rows that have involved Patrice Evra and Luis Suarez in one case, and Anton Ferdinand and John Terry two weekends ago.

    In both cases, the charges were dropped but people such as Sir Alex Ferguson can't believe that rows like this are still happening.

    Of course, the Premier League has seen its fair share of scandals over the past 19 years, and here are the 10 biggest scandals to rock the league.

No. 10: Bootgate

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    David Beckham and Sir Alex Ferguson had a deteriorating relationship for years over a variety of different incidents. However, Bootgate effectively put an end to Beckham's time at Manchester United.

    After losing to Arsenal in the FA Cup, Ferguson lashed out on his players with his infamous "hairdryer treatment". Ferguson then went on to kick a boot, which hit a wall and rebounded to hit Beckham around his eye.

    From the incident, Beckham required several stitches on his face. However, the media thought Ferguson purposely kicked the boot at Beckham due to the tension between the two.

    This incident has been viewed as the last straw for Beckham and his time at Manchester United. Several month's later, Beckham transferred from United to Real Madrid.

No. 9: Portsmouth Goes into Administration

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    After winning the FA Cup in 2008, Portsmouth slowly went into a slow and steady decline. This decline was triggered mainly from Portsmouth's horrific finances, which caused the club to sell off many of their top players.

    In the 2009-2010 campaign, Portsmouth were unable to give their players paychecks due to their weakening finances. Because of this, the Premier League went on to put a transfer embargo on the club.

    Also, the club had massive ownership issues. Within a stretch of one year, the club found themselves with five different owners. However, not one owner was able to help the club achieve any sort of financial stability.

    In February of 2010, due to their continuing weakening finances, the Premier League made Portsmouth the first club in league history to go into administration, docking nine points from them in the process.

    Portsmouth went on to finish last in the Premier League and lost the FA Cup final to Chelsea.

No. 8: Carlos Tevez and Javier Mascherano's Transfer to West Ham

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    Both Carlos Tevez and Javier Mascherano arrived to West Ham from Brazilian club Corinthians at the end of the 2006 summer transfer window.

    However, both Tevez and Mascherano's rights were owned by Iranian-born businessman Kia Joorabchian, who used his power to control clubs over potential transfers involving his clients.

    This, of course, is illegal, but West Ham still kept Tevez through the remainder of the season. Tevez went on to score several huge goals for the Hammers to keep them in the top flight, and send Sheffield United down to the Championship.

    After the season ended, West Ham was investigated by the Premier League over the acquisition of both players, and were found to have illegally benefited from an illegal transfer. As a result, West Ham was fined a record £5.5 million but stayed in the Premier League until their relegation last spring.

No. 7: Wayne Rooney's Affairs and Contract

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    The second half of 2010 was not the best time to be Wayne Rooney. Rooney was fighting a nagging ankle injury that was preventing him from being his best. Rooney's goal scoring was not nearly at its best. Rooney had not scored a goal in open play since the beginning of April.

    In September of 2010, Rooney faced allegations that he had cheated on his wife Coleen while she was pregnant with their first child in 2009. Rooney was unable to escape these allegations and it helped to keep up his poor play.

    October did not prove to be much better. Rooney sent in a transfer request because United were not buying any new players and he felt they did not appear to be committed to winning titles. Rooney eventually signed a new contract, but his actions were not forgiven by United's supporters for months.

No. 6: Richard Keys and Andy Gray's Inappropriate Comments Towards Sian Massey

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    Sian Massey was a female referee who was selected to become a Premier League referee for the 2010-2011 season.

    One of the matches that Massey refereed was a match between Liverpool and Wolverhampton, where before the match started, Sky Sports commentators Richard Keys and Andy Gray made inappropriate comments when they thought that their microphones were off.

    Both pundits did not think she was fit to referee in the Premier League and wondered if she knew what an offside call was.

    In the match, Massey decided that Raul Meireles was onside on a close play, which led to a goal for Liverpool. It was later proven that Massey made the correct call.

    Keys and Gray's statements were later leaked to the press, which led to the departure of both pundits.

No. 5: Rio Ferdinand's Failure to Take a Drug Test

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    Rio Ferdinand was an emerging star for Manchester United when he failed to take a drug test in September of 2003.

    Because he failed to take the test, Ferdinand received an eight month suspension by the FA, causing him to miss the remainder of the 2004 season with Manchester United, along with his national duties for Euro 2004.

    Ferdinand claimed he forgot to take the test because he was moving into a new house and subsequently went shopping.

    The FA and FIFA both wanted to suspend Ferdinand for a year for his actions, but instead he was given an eight month suspension.

No. 4: Pizzagate

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    During the first half of the 2000s, sparks always flew whenever Manchester United and Arsenal met.

    In 2004, Arsenal was riding an incredible 49-match run in the Premier League when they traveled to Old Trafford to take on their rivals. In the match, Man U was able to win the match 2-0, ending Arsenal's unbeaten streak.

    After the match, Arsene Wenger supposedly told Ruud van Nistelrooy that he was "a cheat." Enraged, van Nistelrooy went into his dressing room and told the team, causing Sir Alex Ferguson to confront Wenger.

    While Wenger and Ferguson were arguing, someone from the Arsenal changing room threw a slice of pizza, hitting Ferguson.

    Ashley Cole describes the shock of the incident in his autobiography; "This slice of pizza came flying over my head and hit Fergie straight in the mush...all mouths gawped to see this pizza slip off this famous, puce face and roll down his nice black suit."

No. 3: Ashley Cole's Transfer to Chelsea

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    In the first half of the 2000s, Ashley Cole was a rising star with Arsenal. He was the top left back in the Premier League and he was a key member on the Invicibles squad in the 2003-2004 campaign.

    Cole was named to UEFA's team of the year in 2004 and it seemed that the sky was the limit for the young English star.

    However, rumor broke that Cole and his representative illegally met with Chelsea executives and manager Jose Mourinho in 2005 over a potential transfer to Chelsea.

    Cole was later fined £25,000 for his actions, while Chelsea and Mourinho were fined £300,000 and £200,000 respectively.

    Cole went on to play the 2005-2006 season for Arsenal before transferring to Chelsea in the summer of 2006.

No. 2: Carlos Tevez's Transfer to Manchester City

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    After his time at West Ham, Carlos Tevez moved to Manchester United in 2007. In his two seasons at Old Trafford, Tevez helped the club win the Premier League twice and the Champions League one time.

    Throughout his second season, fans wanted Tevez to stay, but Sir Alex Ferguson was too late in offering a contract to the Argentine international. Instead, Tevez went to Eastlands to join arch rival Manchester City.

    Tevez's transfer was a massive victory for Man City. Later that summer, Man City bought a billboard with Tevez on it, saying "Welcome to Manchester".

    Since then, the rivalry between City and United has heated up tremendously, becoming arguably the best derby in England.

No. 1: John Terry's Affair

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    In the beginning of 2010, it was revealed that John Terry had an affair with the girlfriend of Wayne Bridge, Vanessa Perroncel.

    At the time of the affair, Perroncel and Bridge were still dating, and Terry was already married. Once the media found out, a firestorm emerged over the details of the affair.

    Terry lost his captaincy with the English national team to Rio Ferdinand as a result, and Bridge announced his retirement from the English national team.

    Several weeks later, Bridge's Manchester City side traveled to Stamford Bridge to face Chelsea. With both players starting, many people wondered if Bridge had forgiven his ex-best friend Terry and would shake his hand before the match.

    However, Bridge simply ignored Terry and shook everyone's hand on the line. Last season, Bridge did the same thing to Terry, instead shaking the hand of the kid that Terry was with.

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