£178,000 fine for a Yellow Card and what happens if points are deducted for Cautions instead of fines

In what looks like nothing more than a way of trying to move one of their top wage earners off the books, Galatasaray have fined midfielder Wesley Sneijder nearly £2m for picking up 11 yellow cards last season.  The total fine amounted to £1.96m, which equates to around £178,000 per yellow card. 

With the Dutch midfielder reported to be taking a salary of £2.5m a year, a fine of almost 80% of his salary seems unjust.

For comparison, in the English Premier League, teams are fined just £25,000 if they receive six or more yellow cards.  Last season six teams suffered from this fate.

Interestingly, the teams affected were Chelsea (twice – fined more for repeat offending and receiving nine cautions in one match!) and three teams involved in a relegation battle (Sunderland, Newcastle and Aston Villa).

Games with teams who received six cautions or more:

29/08/2015Newcastle (6 cautions and 1 red) vs Arsenal
19/09/2015Bournemouth vs Sunderland (6 cautions)
24/10/2015 West Ham vs Chelsea (7 cautions)
02/04/2015Aston Villa (6 cautions) vs Chelsea
02/05/2016 Chelsea (9 cautions) vs Tottenham

But are fines the best way to stop misconduct in matches?  We decided to look at what impact a points penalty would have on the league instead of a fine.  In our model for every team with who received six or more cautions in a match we decided to remove a point. 

The result? There were no changes in league standings.  Chelsea still scraped in to the top half while Sunderland remained in the top flight at the expense of Newcastle and Aston Villa who finished 18th and 20th respectively.

Back to the drawing board, we decided to change our model.  We docked a point to any team who received five cautions or more in a game.  We also included teams picking up four yellow cards and one red card and docked a point for these teams too.  For teams who incurred two red cards in one match we docked them two points.  Did this change anything?

In fact it did!  Tottenham's 5-1 defeat to Newcastle on the last day wouldn't have caused them to slip below their arch-rivals in the league meaning their 21 year wait would have finally come to an end.  Serial offenders Chelsea, who by our calculations would be docked three points with these 'new rule' changes, would again still have made it in to the top ten, albeit on goal difference.  The only other affect on the league would see Tony Pulis finish below his old team Palace and slip below Bournemouth too.

So what do you think?  Would getting docked points instead of fines make the league more interesting?  How do you think it would affect the game?  Let us know on Twitter @refsix or on our Facebook page at facebook.com/refsix

The revised Premier League table with points docked instead of fines:

Hassan Rajwani