Newcastle were beaten yesterday at Eastlands as was expected, but they put in a great shift and but for two penalty decisions by the hapless referee, Martin Atkinson, they would have come away with at least a point.
Chris Hughton – had lots of reasons to do this yesterday
Add to the defeat the fact that Hatem Ben Arfa suffered a double break of his left lower leg, and will be out for months, maybe the rest of the season, and it was not a good day for the Newcastle United club.
We’ve never seen Chris Hughton as angry as he was after the game, and so critical of the terrible performance of the referee, Martin Atkinson, who should surely be asked to explain why he didn’t give the penalty against Shola Ameobi, when Shola’s standing leg was taken from under him by Lescott after 78 minutes – a stone cold penalty if ever there was one.
But surprisingly the referees never comment on the game, which makes it so much easier for them to give some ridiculous decisions, and they do.
This is what Chris said today:
“With the world-class players here, you know it’s going to be a difficult day whatever happens,”“But I thought that we went through large periods of the game where we were able to contain them and were comfortable enough.”
“When that happens, you just want some decisions to go your way. I think the referee made two horrendous decisions – and they have cost us.”
Williamson’s challenge on Carlos Tevez on the TV replays was seen to be just outside the penalty box, and the centre-back seemed to get the ball. But Atkinson still awarded a penalty which Tevez himself converted and Atkinson gave Williamson a yellow card.
Sunderland-born substitute Adam Johnson scored the winner on 76 minutes, but then a short two minutes later Joleon Lescott swept Shola Ameobi’s standing right leg from under him, and amazingly Atkinson waved play on.
They should be asked why they didn’t give a penalty, otherwise we’ll start to get claims, as has already been seen in cricket, that some of these games are even fixed. That’s one way to explain some of the terrible decisions these officials continue to make in the Premier League, and why are they always in favor of the richer sides?
And we saw Alex Ferguson complaining again that there was enough added time for his side to score the winner at the Stadium of Light on Saturday – don’t some of these refs know they are supposed to keep playing until Man United get the winner?
It was frustrating for Alex, but would he have been complaining if Man United were 1-0 up? Of course not.
Chris talked about the penalties:
“My first impression of the penalty was that Mike Williamson had played the ball, and also that his challenge was outside the box,” “They were confirmed when I saw it again.”
“My first impression of the foul on Shola Ameobi was that his standing foot had been taken away from him when he went down. That was confirmed as well. When you come to a place like this, you just hope some decisions go your way. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen.”
So we now have the International break for a couple of weeks, and then the lads play Wigan Athletic at home, and let’s be clear, it’s our home form that will decide whether we can stay up in the Premier League this season.
Wigan are evens favorites to be relegated William Hill band are second behind Blackpool, who are still odds on – even after winning 2-1 at Liverpool yesterday, and Newcastle are now 6th favorites to be relegated.
A win against fellow strugglers Wigan seems a must-win now for the lads, and if we can get a win there we’ll be in fairly decent shape with 10 points from the first 8 games – and no luck – no luck at all.