Barton let-off proves ref Scott should go
I’VE got a lot of sympathy for my old adversary Dave Jones. He must have been seething after Sheffield Wednesday were robbed at QPR last weekend. Everybody knew it was a penalty – and everybody could see how lucky Joey Barton was to stay on the pitch.
Joey was already on a yellow card and that should have been a second. To rub salt into the wounds, booking Wednesday’s Jacques Maghoma for diving was outrageous.
I saw Dave’s comments afterwards and I could tell he was being very careful about what he said.
When you go into a Press conference after a performance like that, you’re furious at the referee. But you can’t say anything about him being biased, about his character or his personality. All you can say is that he had a bad game.
You have to get across how bewildered and disappointed you are without being hauled in front of the FA. But it’s so easy to cross the line because at that moment, you feel so cheated. If you told the truth at Press conferences, you’d be skint.
Dave’s had to bite his tongue as best he could, but at least he can console himself that the proof was in watching the game. It was there for everyone to see.
The referee, Scott Mathieson, has certainly cost me a few quid in the past and unfortunately it looked like another one of those games for him.
I’ve seen Scott have good days, but I’m afraid I’ve seen him have more bad ones. I would have thought at this stage, the FA hierarchy might have thought about letting someone younger have a go.
Scott’s 50 now. He told me he was stopping on two or three occasions and he never has. But, like myself, you have to realise when it’s time to step aside.
I would imagine that some of the younger referees further down the divisions would be very disappointed not to get a Championship game when they see performances like that.
On the flip side, I had a quick chat with Harry Redknapp at the Olympic Park on Monday, just as I was finishing a programme for BT.
We were talking about the game and we both agreed – if decisions go for you and you’re a bit fortunate, so what? When that final whistle goes and you’ve got the three points, it doesn’t matter how you did it.
It’s such a relief to get off the mark that you don’t care about the performance, the display, anything.
But let’s not kid ourselves – QPR were never going to struggle.When a team can bring Shaun WrightPhillips, Charlie Austin and Jermaine Jenas off the bench, whoever finishes above them is going up.
ANGER: Warnock stares down Scott Mathieson, hidden extreme left. Right: Mathieson books Joey Barton