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SPORTS UPDATE

EPL: My first job is to protect Everton players and the fans, says Lampard

Everton boss Frank Lampard, refused to back down after copping a Football Association misconduct charge this week.

The charge relates to the former Chelsea’s midfielder’s comments about Stuart Atwell’s officiating of the Merseyside derby defeat at Anfield last month, which it is alleged constituted improper conduct as they implied bias and/or attack the integrity of the match referee.

Lampard was unhappy his side did not get a penalty with the score at 0-0 when Anthony Gordon, who had already been booked for diving, went down under a challenge from Joel Matip.

In his post-match press conference, the Toffees boss suggested that had the incident happened to a Liverpool player the outcome would have been different.

“It’s an emotional game, isn’t it? My first job is to protect Everton Football Club for the players, for the club itself and for the fans,” said Lampard, who has until Monday to respond to the FA charge.

“I can’t talk about it. I’ve got to reply to the FA and at this point I can’t speak more about it.”

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