Sat Oct 22 07:23:20 SAST 2016

Ref's blunder ignites debate

By unknown | Aug 18, 2009 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

LONDON- England's refereeing supremo has called for goal-line technology to be introduced, after the first major controversy of the season when Crystal Palace failed to have a legal goal awarded against Bristol City on Saturday.

Keith Hackett, the general manager of the Professional Game Match Officials Board, which is responsible for overseeing England's leading match officials, apologised to Crystal Palace after referee Rob Shoebridge's blunder.

Shoebridge awarded a goal-kick after a shot from Freddie Sears bounced back into the field of play after hitting the stanchion holding up the net.

His decision provoked a furious reaction from Palace manager Neil Warnock after the Championship (second division) game that City won 1-0 with a late winner.

Warnock said City should have allowed Palace to score a goal to make up for the referee's error, adding: "We can put a man on the moon, time serves at 100 miles an hour at Wimbledon, yet we cannot place a couple of sensors in a net to show when a goal has been scored."

He also demanded that the match should be replayed though the Football League ruled at the weekend that the result would stand.

Hackett said Shoebridge would not officiate at another game for at least two weeks and told Talksport Radio yesterday: "I am a very strong advocate of goal-line technology, so is the Football Association, so are the Premier League and the Football League. But despite everyone in England being in favour, Fifa and the International Board rejected the use of goal-line technology."

Fifa president Sepp Blatter is against football losing what he calls "its human face".

Uefa will experiment with two extra linesmen behind the goal at Europa League matches this season, ruling on whether the ball has crossed the goal line or not.

Gary Johnson, the Bristol City manager, said yesterday that he could not tell his team to allow Palace to score because he had been informed there was an infringement leading up to the goal.

"We all saw the ball hit the back of the net and come straight back out, but the linesman had his flag in the air and at that point no one knew why the goal was not given," he told Talksport. - Reuters


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