Hunt”s comments on Milijas affair show the game is in sorry state
Stephen Hunt has said that his Wolves team-mates need to wise up and be better at surrounding referees to influence their decisions.
His comments are irritating, annoying and typify all that is wrong with the English game.
Complaining after his team-mate Nenad Milijas was sent off at Arsenal this week, he said: ‘Players are clever and the reactions sometimes do not help referees. Everyone does it now. We should maybe be better at it. We should have been surrounding the ref.’
Marching orders: Stuart Attwell sends off Nenad Milijas against Arsenal
Not helpful and not correct, Stephen. Teams should not be surrounding referees but I can understand why you mistakenly think they ought to.
Premier League football is win at all costs. Wolves need every point in their relegation battle. If they can gain or save numerical advantage by harassing the referee, I can see why they would want to do that. Unfortunately, players are able to get away with it.
It is an offence for three or more players to surround the referee. That is fact, not opinion, and match delegates are supposed to report those incidents and punishment from the FA should follow. This is not happening enough.
Bad call: Leon Osman was awarded a penalty after he tripped himself in the box
When a player feels the slightest contact he goes to ground and it is technically a foul. The referee’s duty is to apply the law. What other choice does he have but to blow for a free-kick Once a foul has been committed, team-mates of the victim crowd around the referee demanding a red or yellow card.
Referees must also share some of the blame. Howard Webb was incorrect in awarding a penalty to Everton after Leon Osman stubbed his foot.
Osman was being pursued by bad boy Lee Cattermole, so was Webb’s decision making prejudiced
The game is in a sorry state. It is increasingly difficult to say what is fair, foul, excessive or acceptable.