Referee avoids red card after fighting with footballer on pitch

A local football match descended into chaos when the referee started brawling on the pitch with one of the players.

John Chalk.

John Chalk and midfielder Carl Marton have been fined following the altercation shortly after half-time in a Saturday League clash.

The pair were involved in a verbal exchange before they ended up rolling around on the floor at the match between Scalby and Filey Town Reserves in Scarborough, prompting an FA inquiry.

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Scalby player Mr Marton said: “It was a bizarre situation. I just walked over to him after we’d had a verbal exchange and before I knew it we were on the ground.

Referee John Chalk and Scalby player Carl Marton avoided bans at this week's FA inquiry into their scuffle last season

“I had a bruised lip and it was swollen afterwards, I was just stunned by what had happened.”

The game was brought to a premature halt at just 52 minutes following the ensuing melee, as Filey led 5-2.

Both have now been fined £75 and warned as to their future conduct for bringing the game into disrepute, but avoided lengthy bans as the assault charges levelled at both of them were dropped.

Following the incident, Mr Chalk admitted his deep regret regarding his actions. He said: “You see it happen quite a lot with two players, but not with the ref. It just happened in half a second, it was just a moment of madness. It was just daft from both of us. Things just escalated.

“It’s sickened me to the pit of my stomach. I played football for years and always enjoyed a bit of banter on the pitch. I came into refereeing to give something back to the game. It’s an awful situation.”

Phil Perry, secretary for Scalby FC, said he was relieved Mr Marton has avoided further punishment.