Middlesbrough fans will not be feeling too good today following the events that transpired in their match against Swansea City yesterday.
It’s fair to say that it was a rather controversial second half at the Liberty Stadium and Boro were on the end of some poor refereeing decisions once again.
The first contentious decision came when Marc Bola fired an effort into the top corner from the edge of the box at the start of the second half, but referee Gavin Ward decided to blow his whistle for a foul by Yannick Bolasie, when he looked to have cleanly won the ball in a tackle that dispossessed Jay Fulton.
And when the spoils looked likely to be shared thanks to Sam Morsy’s 91st minute equaliser for the visitors, Ward punished Boro again when he adjudged George Saville to have taken out Jake Bidwell as the two went in for a loose ball.
Multiple angles are inconclusive – some look to show Bidwell kicking Saville’s leg to get a shot away and from others it looks like it may be a foul – but Ward gave a corner at first before changing his mind after major shouts from Swans players and pointed to the spot.
Quiz: Have each of these 24 ex-Middlesbrough players retired or not?
Andre Ayew converted the penalty for the winning goal and it left Warnock irate, berating Ward on the pitch at full time and then went on a huge rant on Sky Sports which ended up going viral on social media.
"They all want to get celebrity status"
Neil Warnock was not happy at all with referee Gavin Ward and the match officials after Middlesbrough's 2-1 loss to Swansea 😠 pic.twitter.com/lfZG41CpsN
— Sky Sports Football (@SkyFootball) March 6, 2021
Following his national TV rant, Warnock seemed to have calmed down a bit and he had been granted permission to speak with Ward and he revealed what exactly went down in the room between the two – including telling all about why Ward gave the decisions.
“I’ve been to see him after the game because I had to ask what his interpretation was,” said to BBC Tees, per Teesside Gazette.
“For the foul he said he thought their defender got the ball and was fouled by Yannick. When you watch the incident, Yannick gets the ball and the defender falls down, it should have been a penalty or a goal.
“He’s totally got it wrong. He said if he’s made a mistake he’ll hold his hand up so I’ll get an apology which won’t help me one little bit.”
Regarding the decision from Ward to give the late penalty, Warnock said: “He said he gave a corner but then when he stood still and thought about it he didn’t think he (Saville) got the ball. I don’t understand it.”
It won’t comfort Boro fans to know why Ward gave what he gave, as looking back at the disallowed goal especially it’s hard to imagine him seeing anything other than a clean tackle from Bolasie.
As for the penalty decision, it shouldn’t really take a referee that long to come to a decision, and the fact that he had to stand still and think about it as Warnock relaid means he couldn’t exactly be sure if it was a foul or not.
Regardless of the fact that Ward looks like he’s made some major mistakes, expect a fine to land at the desk of Mr. Warnock for his Sky Sports outburst…