Belfast Telegraph

Monday 1 September 2014

Coyle speaks up for little clubs

Owen Coyle

Bolton boss Owen Coyle believes the smaller clubs just "don't get the rub of the green" from referees when they go to places like Arsenal and Chelsea.

The Trotters went down 4-1 at Emirates Stadium on Saturday, after having to play the final 30 minutes with 10 men following Gary Cahill's red card. It was, though, the decision by referee Stuart Attwell not to award his side a free-kick in a dangerous position just before the sending off, when the score was 2-1, which left Coyle bitterly disappointed.

He said: "Maybe when the smaller clubs come to the elite clubs, they don't get the rub of the green."

The former Burnley manager made his feelings clear to the controversial 27-year-old official at the final whistle, maintaining there had been a clear foul by Kieran Gibbs on Lee Chung-yong moments before Arsenal broke and Cahill was shown a straight red card for going through the back of Marouane Chamakh.

"Last year we all know what happened here, we were 2-1 up when Mark Davies was fouled by Mr [William] Gallas, Arsenal equalised while he was lying injured and made it two each, then we went on to lose the game," Coyle lamented.

"I remember we went to Chelsea late on last season, there were two stonewall penalties denied us and we lost 1-0.

"We came to Arsenal again, and there was another big moment."

Coyle accepts referees have a "thankless task" - however, the Bolton boss stressed the importance of continuity.

"As mangers what we want is that they get the big decisions right," Coyle said.

"It was such a glaring foul on the edge of the box and the assistant, has he abdicated responsibility? I don't know - but they were both in good positions to see it."

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