Belfast Telegraph

Alan Green: Ref wasn’t the only Old Trafford clot

Now I know all about the need to ‘play to the whistle’: I know, too, about the bizarre things that happen to Tottenham at Old Trafford like goals not being given when the ball is at least a couple of yards over the line and penalties being awarded that help you lose 5-2 when you’d been winning 2-0.

And I accept that ‘technically’ Manchester United’s second goal was correct. No law was broken. The assistant hadn’t flagged for an obvious hand ball and the referee hadn’t awarded a free-kick.

But, surely, we’re all agreed that what happened was ridiculous and a huge defeat for common sense?

I defended Mark Clattenburg for his refereeing during Chelsea’s win at Manchester City the other Sunday, perhaps generously, but I won’t defend the indefensible officiating at United.

He was a clot, as was his assistant, and Nani’s ‘goal’ should have been ruled out.

Mind you there were two other clots around: Gomes, who should have been more careful, and Ferdinand for his inexcusable ‘lobbying’ of the officials.

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