In tonight’s UEFA Champions League match between Arsenal and Olympiakos the Arsenal coach, Arsen Wenger, was banned from the technical area after misconduct in earlier rounds.

He was initially banned from the technical area for the qualifying round match against Udinese of Italy but because he chose to pass on instructions via one of his coaching staff who sat beside him in the directors’ box, he was banned for another two matches by UEFA.

There has been much discussion about technology in football, especially the use of goal line technology but this is a different matter.

A UEFA ban on a manger communicating with his players while banned raises special problems, given the new technology.

Suppose a manager sat in his office during a match watching the match on television and relayed instructions to his coaching staff via mobile phone or even MSN.

Is this against the terms of the restriction?

What is the difference between this situation and passing on information via another coach sitting beside him in the directors’ box?

Not a lot!

New technology has changed the effect of bans on coaches and managers.

The regulations should take account of this.

Maybe they need updated.

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