Posh men in demand
Steve Evans has never been one to hold back his feelings after a football match - even the most uneventful ones.
So when he has two of his players sent off by a rookie referee and his side are beaten, you just know the sparks will fly.
And they certainly did at Home Park on Saturday as he let rip at the post-match press conference following a 2-1 loss to fellow play-off chasers Plymouth Argyle.
The furious Posh boss described referee Craig Hicks as “horrendous” and accused him of being a “buckler” and claimed he cost Posh a “good point”.
Evans had no complaints with the stoppage time penalty decision which led to the winning goal, but he was enraged by the sending off of Liam Shephard on 75 minutes for what appeared to be an innocuous coming together with Graham Carey.
Further decisions by the referee not to send off Argyle’s Jamie Ness for a foul on George Cooper, or Ryan Taylor for catching Jack Baldwin in the area, were also criticised by Evans.
He fumed: “He sends my right-back off and says it’s an elbow, but Carey’s run into my player - it’s a shambolic decision.
“The tackle from the boy Ness on George Cooper - he’s already on a yellow. Perhaps it’s a straight red. If you give him the benefit it’s a second yellow.
“He’s a buckler for me. I’m not questioning his integrity and his honesty but he’s produced a diabolical performance in such a big game for both clubs.
“We didn’t get beat by Plymouth, we got beaten by an horrendous referee.
“But if you look at the game we started really well and went in front.
“We played great football and should have scored a second one but George Cooper put it over the bar.
“They get a goal for me against the run of play. Plymouth then have a little spell.
“Second half they have more of the ball than us, but let’s look at the decisions. Let’s look at why Ness is on the park and Ryan Taylor, who elbows a player.
“Players are honest. I’ve spoken to two or three Plymouth boys as I’m walking off and they don’t know why Ness is on the pitch or Ryan Taylor.
“There’s defining moments. Liam Shephard’s is never a red card. If Steven Taylor has said something inappropriate the referee has the right to take whatever action he takes.
“But these are not fine line decisions. He’s cost us a good point.
“He should not be in League One. He’s had seven or eight games in League One and when you check his stats - and all managers check them - probably none in an atmosphere like today, probably not with the value of the game there is today, and he buckled it.”
Evans was once again full of praise for Marriott, describing him as “gold dust,” and was pleased with Cooper who replaced Marcus Maddison after the forward turned his ankle in training on Friday.
Attention now turns to Rochdale at home on Saturday followed by trips to first and third in the table - Blackburn Rovers and Shrewsbury Town.
Evans was pleased with the performance of George Cooper
Evans: ‘The referee has produced a diabolical performance’
Liam Shephard is shown a red card. Graham Carey is floored.