Well-known Exeweb poster
- Jan 6, 2006
- Hagley, Stourbridge
sadly this is so true. We know how it all works. Once the referee has given an important decision for the away side he doesn't want stick from the home fans if they lose, so he looks for a decision to 'even things up'. Right from the penalty I knew the ref would make a big call against us at some stage. Frankly I suspected that would be sending off Ray due to the running battle he was having with Ironside.My conclusion is that he either did not know the laws of the game, or that he panicked under pressure from the Cambridge crowd and players, and capitulated. Either way it is a depressing example of the weakness we see regularly from officials. It is why players from every team pressurise referees: it works. You get decisions overturned in your favour as a result.
So it makes sense for teams to make the referee think that he's got a decision wrong by surrounding him. It now makes sense, in terms of winning games, for every club's players to do what the Cambridge players did...but that is so bad for the game.
Oh ...and consistency. Matt Taylor booked for dissent. Law 12 cautions (bookings) for any 'dissent by word or action' So why weren't the Cambridge players complaining about the linesman's decision booked? We all know why - its because it is a law that weak officials and officialdom have consistently failed to enforce, so much so that it has fallen into disrespect.
(to repeat what my referee instructor Bob Bassindale said when I was qualifying as a referee 30+ years ago - ' a player comes chasing after me only for one of two things - a yellow card or a red card')