BRETT’S QUICK HIT HAS BARKER RAGING
BOURNEMOUTH ..3 CRAWLEY ........0 Ref Lee got it wrong, says Crawley boss
TOP-FLIGHT referee Lee Probert incurred the wrath of Crawley boss Richie Barker following Bournemouth’s controversial second goal at Dean Court.
Barker was convinced Brett Pitman’s 25-yarder should have been chalked off as he claimed referee Probert had wrongly allowed the striker to take an early free-kick.
Pitman caught Crawley napping when he squeezed his effort into the bottom corner as the visitors were still assembling their defensive wall – killing off Crawley’s hopes.
Barker said:“I have been told in the past by officials that that was no longer allowed.
“I asked the fourth official whether the referee or the player had instigated it. His reply was that the referee had asked the player if he wanted to take a quick free-kick.
“It is hard enough as it is without the referee doing that as well so, for me, that was poor refereeing. I am only stating a fact so I can’t get into trouble. I will put it in my report and, for me, the goal should not have stood.”
Pitman’s strike, his third goal since his return to Bournemouth, doubled the hosts’ lead after Gary Alexander’s own goal had made it 1-0 in the 16th minute.
Bournemouth assistant boss Jason Tindall said:“From our point of view, it was intelligent play from Brett. He saw an opening to score and he executed it fantastically well.
“Whether it should have stood or not, I am not too sure what the rules are. But I can’t see why it shouldn’t have stood. I’m sure if it had happened at the other end, they would have had a different view.”
Bournemouth old boy Shaun Cooper went close when his speculative effort from 20 yards flashed past the post after four minutes.
However, that was as good as it got for the visitors in the opening period with Bournemouth dominating and creating chances.
Crawley goalkeeper Paul Jones got down smartly at his near post to keep out Marc Pugh’s first-time effort, before the Cherries were gifted the lead when Alexander, under no pressure, inadvertently headed a Steve Cook cross past his own goalkeeper.
Lewis Grabban squandered a glorious chance to double the lead when he dragged his shot wide before quick thinking from Pitman saw him net from the free kick.
Pitman then blazed over from close range after Charlie Daniels’s corner had picked him out before Jones pushed away a stinging effort from Grabban as Bournemouth threatened to run riot in the first half.
Tindall added: “It was a fantastic result. It was always going to be difficult with two games in quick succession.The aim was to come away with six points.”
Crawley came into the game more in the second period but Bournemouth’s former England goalkeeper David James proved a tough man to beat. And Eunan O’Kane had the final say for Bournemouth when his adept finish from a Simon Francis pass sealed the Cherries’ win.