Writer: J P Fear
Date:Sunday November 5 2006
Blackburn Rovers manager Mark Hughes was left fuming after match ref Harry Web awarded a penalty against his team following the advice of his assistant ref.
He said: 'We think the penalty is a poor decision from the referee and his assistant. At that time we were quite comfortable in the game and Villa hadn't really caused us that many problems.'
He might be right about the penalty being harsh, but to say Villa were causing no problems is amazing, he has obviously been studying the managers cliché book or was watching a different game to me!
Adding: 'Although we never got to the level we needed to in the first 45 minutes, we were looking to get to half-time and have a real go in the second half. To concede the penalty in those circumstances was a big decision for the referee and they are paid to get big decisions right. He didn't get that one right'.
'Then in the second half Petrov, from our free-kick, has made a movement to the ball with his elbow. It strikes his elbow but the referee doesn't give that one. I would question why he didn't. I asked the assistant when he came off if he was sure he had got the decision right. I'm not quite sure how I can describe his reaction, whether he was a bit non-plussed by the fact I actually questioned his decision. Things happen quickly. I understand that but most people on the ground thought it was a harsh decision.'
Hmmm, boo hoo springs to mind as another reaction?! They appeared to come for a point and got no more than they deserved.
The honest as ever Villa boss Martin O'Neill conceded: 'I have seen the penalty again and I also saw the incident where Petrov was involved. If you give one, you probably have to give the other one. Some people said it was a very soft penalty but I have seen them given. Then again if that is the case, Petrov's is the same from the free-kick.'
Date:Sunday November 5 2006
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