Unfortunately for the second week in a row referee’s have grabbed all the headlines.
To be fair to the men in the middle, they couldn’t really effect the weather, however in the one and only game, which took place in the JJB Premiership, between Institute and Crusaders, match official Stephen Weatherall spoiled the 1-1 draw.
Institute boss John Gregg didn’t want to criticise the referee too much, instead he wanted to praise his battling players, who were only a minute away from an opening day success.
“First off I have to watch what I say, but I was very, very disappointed in the standard of some of the decisions which were made,” said Gregg.
“I felt the dismissal of Ryan Semple was very bad, because he only flicked the ball away.
“I know referee’s have a hard job to do, but I just want a level of consistency.
“I said before the game that I didn’t want my side to be bullied, whenever we are at home we need to have a bit of pride in our performance and everything I asked for I got on Saturday. The work ethic in my team was great.
“I have lads in my changing room who are so disappointed that you would think we lost, but I told them that they have to remember we played with just nine men for the final 25 minutes, so I can’t praise my players enough for their battling spirit.”
For Crusaders manager Stephen Baxter he was furious that his side failed to take maximum points a rain swept Riverside Stadium.
“If it had have been a boxing match it would have been stopped after an hour,” said Baxter.
“We totally battered them all day long and they scored with the one and only time they got in our half.
“I’m furious with my players that we didn’t take our chances.”