FIFA chief Sepp Blatter has criticised England captain David Beckham for his deliberate booking against Wales.
Beckham sparked a controversy by revealing he picked up a yellow card in Saturday’s World Cup qualifying victory to enable him to serve a one-match ban while injured.
“It’s disappointing because it is not the behaviour that befits an ambassador of football and fair play,” Blatter was quoted as saying in Baku, ahead of England’s World Cup qualifier against Azerbaijan.
“Beckham is a role model for footballers everywhere. I will be having a word with (chairman) Geoff Thompson of the FA about the situation while I am here in Baku. After that it is not up to FIFA.”
Meanwhile, England coach Sven Goran Eriksson, tried to play down the significance of Beckham’s admission.
“Whether we condemn it or not is another matter but it has always been there,” Eriksson said. “We can’t close our eyes to that.”
Eriksson, who intends to issue a statement on Beckham’s remarks after England’s game in Azerbaijan, claimed the issue had been overblown.
“I really don’t know where you want to bring football,” he said.
“In every country in the world an attacker goes down when maybe he could have stayed on his feet. What’s that? That’s football.
“It would be a perfect world if everybody was always perfect. But football has always been like that. It is not good but it happens.
“I won’t talk to Michael Owen about going down or whatever. I don’t travel around with a school class, I’m not a school teacher or a father for a Sunday school.
“I should like to live in a perfect world as well, no problems, no fouls, everybody is happy. It is football, you have 11 opponents, you have the pressure on you, things happen in life.”
Geoff Hurst, who scored a hat-trick in the 1966 final win over Germany, said there could be a case for Beckham to be charged by FIFA with bringing international football into disrepute.
“If they’ve read that, they could say he’s bringing the game into disrepute, I would argue he brings the country into disrepute,” he said.