I’m quick enough to condemn managers, and especially Alex Ferguson, for what I believe to be harsh criticism of referees and their assistants (or linesman, as I would call them), when they are looking for a scapegoat for a bad performance or for picking the wrong team, etc.
On this occasion I am totally with Fergie. I watched the game and I can’t see any reason whatsoever why the assistant referee missed the clear off-side for Drogba’s winning goal.
Sometimes a run is that well timed it catches the assistant out as well as the defence, or the decision is influenced by the colour of the first shirt the assistant sees, in short, sometimes you can understand why a mistake has been made.
Not this time, I can’t see any reason for this, it is just purely and simply an incompetent decision. And it could have decided the league title.
With regard to the incident of Martin Olsson’s dive last Sunday, and the subsequent comments in the week after, it was no surprise to see referee Mike Dean turn down a couple of strong penalty claims today, from both sides.
When I heard about Olsson’s comments and that Dean was doing the Man Utd V Chelsea game, I had a feeling it would have to be a stone wall penalty for Dean to give one today, and so it seemed.
With Alex Ferguson still on a two match suspended sentence over the Alan Wiley insults earlier in the season, I wonder if the FA will let Fergie’s remarks go this time.