Megson given FA date to have his say

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GARY Megson will face the Football Association this week over his second charge of improper conduct.

His personal hearing will take place in Leeds on Thursday.

The Sheffield Wednesday manager has admitted to the charge but will make a plea in mitigation.

He will explain the reasons for his public criticism of referee Steve Rushton after the game at Dagenham and Redbridge and hope that they will be taken into account.

The FA will then decide on the punishment. There is no standard penalty for an offence of this type; he could receive a fine or a touchline ban. Megson’s first charge has already been dealt with and arose from his sending-off during the game and language towards the officials.

The Owls boss accepted this charge and its standard penalty of £1,000.

His media interviews led to the second charge.

He accused Rushton of being influenced by a conversation with Dagenham’s John Still and he said that he understood it was against the rules for managers to talk to referees at half-time.

Meanwhile, the Owls reserves play Port Vale at Stocksbridge tonight (7pm) and are likely to continue with a youthful line-up.

They also face Barnsley at the same venue on Friday (2pm).

With the first team now virtually safe, if not yet mathematically so, the club can look with some comfort at the intensifying battle going on below them for League One survival. Third-from-bottom Notts County play away tonight at 18th-placed Tranmere. who almost certainly will be staying up if they win.

County have nosedived into trouble by losing their last nine games, and have scored a paltry three goals in that spell.

The Owls are 15th after their win against Hartlepool and with 53 points are two above the usual safety mark.