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'This is not over yet' – Marinakis demands Gary Neville is 'subject to FA rules'

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NOTTINGHAM FOREST owner Evangelos Marinakis has revealed his legal team contacted Sky about Gary Neville and his “inappropriate” comments.

Forest stunned the football world last month after berating the PGMOL following a 2-0 defeat to Everton.

Nottingham Forest owner Evangelos Marinakis believes the FA should take action regarding Gary Nevile's 'mafia' comments

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Nottingham Forest owner Evangelos Marinakis believes the FA should take action regarding Gary Nevile’s ‘mafia’ commentsCredit: PA
Gary Neville suggested Nottingham Forest's statement was like a 'mafia-gang' statement

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Gary Neville suggested Nottingham Forest’s statement was like a ‘mafia-gang’ statementCredit: Getty

The club issued a statement claiming they had warned the organisation about the risk of bias from a Luton-supporting VAR official.

Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville heavily criticised Forest as a result, even comparing the act to a “mafia gang” statement.

He said: “What the hell are they playing at? They’ve grabbed defeat from victory with the way they’ve handled it.

“It’s like a petulant child, it’s embarrassing. The suggestion of cheating because there’s an official who’s a Luton fan is a scandal and they will pay for that.

“They will regret that as a football club. It”s a horrendous statement by that football club.”

Nottingham Forest subsequently launched legal action against Sky Sports, citing Neville’s statements.

And Marinakis believes the FA should also take action.

In an interview with the Daily Mail, the owner said: “The truth is this specific referee is well known to be a Luton fan – and no doubt declared his interest to PGMOL, as all of them have to.

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“In my opinion, the PGMOL should not have selected him for this match. Luton were directly below Forest at that time. In the final relegation place in 18th position.

“The match against Everton was hugely important for the club’s survival in the Premier League. The PGMOL should not have risked even the suspicion or perception of any bias, even unconscious bias.

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“To be clear, we don’t expect to dictate or to impose a change to the PGMOL or Premier League but it is our duty to warn of a situation and be proactive.”

He continued: “We made this announcement because we tried to protect and then there is a big fuss – but that was made from Sky Sports and specific guys.

“I can bring you 100 examples of times they exaggerated, didn’t say the truth and humiliated people.

“Neville is subject to FA rules too, surely – he is a director of Salford FC. His comment about the club was outrageous, but the FA have done nothing.

“I need to be careful – because our lawyers have already been in contact with Sky regarding Neville and this is not over yet. The comments and words he used were inappropriate, didn’t correspond with reality and harmed people.”

PGMOL chief Howard Webb claimed after the match that Nottingham Forest should have been awarded a penalty.

The Reds all-but secured safety in the Premier League at the weekend.

That’s after relegation rivals Luton suffered a 3-1 defeat to West Ham.

What have Nottingham Forest said?

After the final whistle against Everton, Nottingham Forest’s official Twitter account tweeted: “Three extremely poor decisions – three penalties not given – which we simply cannot accept.

“We warned the PGMOL that the VAR is a Luton fan before the game but they didn’t change him. Our patience has been tested multiple times.

“NFFC will now consider its options.”

On Monday the club revealed they have requested the PGMOL release the audio recordings between officials during the match.

A statement read: “Nottingham Forest has today submitted a formal request to the PGMOL to release into the public domain the audio recordings between officials during yesterday’s match against Everton at Goodison Park.

“The club has requested this be shared for three key match incidents – Ashley Young’s challenge on Giovanni Reyna (24th minute), Ashley Young’s handball (44th minute) and Ashley Young’s challenge on Callum Hudson-Odoi (56th minute).

“We firmly advocate for the broader football community and supporters to have access to the audio and transcript for full transparency, ensuring the integrity of our sport is upheld.”

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