Belfast Telegraph

It was a stonewall penalty: Jeffrey blast after Ballymena lose top two clash with Linfield

Ballymena Manager David Jeffrey.
Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker
Ballymena Manager David Jeffrey. Pic Colm Lenaghan/Pacemaker

David Jeffrey left Windsor Park a frustrated man for the second Saturday in a row.

After his side added a 1-0 Premiership defeat to leaders Linfield to their League Cup final loss by the same score to the same team, the Ballymena boss was annoyed that his side hadn't been given the chance to equalise in the last minute.

It was when Adam Lecky's shot hit Jimmy Callacher that the Sky Blues claimed for a penalty for handball. Referee Tim Marshall did not agree.

"I think we've done more than enough to get something from the game," Jeffrey told BBC Radio Ulster. "What I really am frustrated about is the penalty we should have been given. It was a great strike from Adam Lecky and it's a stonewall penalty. The ball was going goalward. I don't have any control over the referee - I have control over my players and yet again I'm very proud of them.

"Decisions like that cost players contracts of managers jobs. I wouldn't be an official for all the tea in china because it's an incredibly hard job. You're accountable and you're responsible. We've watched it back and I think it's clear. You can tell by the response of the players.

"(Referee Marshall) wants to look at it and he will have his own opinion. From my perspective, from the perspective of my players and some of the opposition players, it was a penalty and it should have been given."

Linfield are now nine points clear at the top of the table thanks to Josh Robinson's second half header. Comparing the centre-half to team-mate Jimmy Callacher, who has eight league goals, Blues boss David Healy said he expects Robinson to score more.

Sign In

"Josh should score more goals," he told BBC Radio Ulster after Robinson's third Premiership goal of the campaign. "He's very aggressive in the air. He's very good in the air defensively. We' Jimmy has eight or nine from set-plays, Mark Stafford has a few, Mark Haughey is a threat when he plays. It's time Josh stepped up. He's scored two goals this neither, neither of them headers so I was pleased that he got one. It's something we've been working on and it's good when something like that comes off."

Linfield kept their 21st clean sheet of the season and needless to say, that was much to Healy's pleasing.

He continued: "Credit to the back five. We needed to be big and strong and the pleasingg thing is that's two games in a row we've kept clean sheets against a Ballymena side who have scored 61 goals in the league this season."

Belfast Telegraph Digital


From Belfast Telegraph