Glentoran 2 Dungannon Swifts 1
Dungannon Swifts manager Darren Murphy is calling on referees to front up and hold meetings with managers on a regular basis.
Although his team was denied what looked a clear penalty a minute after Andy Waterworth struck an injury-time winner to give Glentoran, including David Howland (pictured with Ryan Harpur) a 2-1 victory, Murphy stopped short of firing a blast at referee Alan Black.
Instead he wants managers to be able to develop closer relationships with referees so that the constant criticism of officials can stop.
“If I keep making mistakes as a manager I’ll not be in a job,” said Murphy. “If players keep making mistakes a manager lets them go or they won’t be in the team.
“When a referee makes mistakes I don’t know what happens. Maybe something does happen.”
After speaking to Black, Murphy also talked with referee’s assessor David Best after the final whistle as he sought clarification over a red card shown to substitute Sean Friars at the end of the game. That followed a frantic final 35 minutes in which Dungannon took the lead through Josh Cahoon before Richard Clarke equalised. Waterworth then pounced to win the game, but had a foul been given when Swifts sub Jamie Glackin went down in the box even deeper into injury time it could have been a different outcome.
“We meet each other once a year. We maybe should meet each other a few more times because at the moment there is no relationship,” said Murphy.
“The only way to help things is to try to meet more often, maybe they come to the clubs once a month like they do in England. Explain what they do, how they do it, why they do it. I understand they are human beings and I understand that you can make mistakes, but it doesn’t make it any easier.
“I know that they are under pressure from assessors watching them. I know that they are under pressure in regards to points, markings or whatever they have to get.
“I understand all of that, but to move the whole game forward there has to be something done and somebody has to be brave enough, should it be a manager, or should it be the head of the referees association, because there has to be something done.”