March 14, 2010
A strange game against Blackburn yesterday – probably the most consistently inept refereeing performance seen at White Hart Lane this season by none other than “England’s number one referee”, Howard Webb.
Whilst Webb did his best to take centre stage, Spurs played some good football at times, but also showed moments of vulnerability. With an away trip to Stoke next Saturday, it was a good chance for Gomes to practice his collection of crosses and build some confidence. However, he did rather make a mess of the goal.
I actually think this goal stems from the corner prior to the one which Chris Samba heads in.
Gomes comes for a Pedersen corner, and sort of pushes it two-handed straight out for another, before appealing for a free-kick. Andy Gray (who was one of the biggest defenders of Gomes last season) in commentary questioned him for not claiming it and, on viewing it again, it does seem that he could have caught it, even with the pressure from Dunn. Our goalkeeper does tend to lose confidence very easily, and I wonder whether this slight error meant that he felt he had to do something about the next corner.
As the corner is about to be taken, you can see Samba just making a move on Dawson. Notice Gomes here – he has a line of players in front of him.
When the ball reaches the six-yard box, it has become even more cluttered.
Samba rises well, and meets the ball – Gomes, having attempted to come and claim the ball, is nowhere near it, as there were simply too many bodies in the way.
Absolutely no doubt about it, thugh, Samba fouls Dawson. It’s no wonder that Samba rose well – he had two hands on Dawson, and was using him as a spring board. Nine times out of ten, the goal would have been disallowed.
Foul or not, though, Gomes will need to improve his decision-making next week against Stoke City.
Back to the referee – he got virtually every big decision in the game wrong.
- Bale penalty -I noticed that Match of the Day highlighted the foul on Bale, which was as clear-cut a penalty as you’re likely to see but, oddly, they didn’t pick up on the one three minutes later, where his back leg was taken in a similar position. Both pens.
- Samba goal – clear foul, as highlighted above.
- Kalinic goal – there’s no doubt that he touched the ball with his hand, but Dawson clearly pushed him into that movement, and it was unintentional. Great strike by the way,and the goal should have stood.
The other talking point highlighted on Match of the Day and, surprise surprise, by Sam Allardyce, was the apparent foul on David Dunn in the first half. He gets sandwiched between Corluka and Palacios, and Palacios takes the ball, but only after Corluka appears to foul him. I must admit, I initially thought that it was a penalty. However, if you re-watch the challenge (52 seconds in), and focus on Dunn’s arm, there’s no argument; it’s not a foul by Corluka. If anything, it’s Dunn who commits the foul, although I think it’s better to put it down as a “coming together” – the referee got that one right at least.
And finally, I can’t help but end by picking up on Sam Allardyce’s post-match comments. Is there a worse loser in the Premier League than “Big Sam”?
“We had the lion’s share of the play”. Right Sam, I know you’re a stats man – have a look at the possession, shots, and pass completion from yesterday’s game.
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