Sunderland manager Phil Parkinson said he was left “gobsmacked” by a refereeing decision that saw the Black Cats’ appeal for a late penalty turned down.
Parkinson issued some scathing criticism toward referee Stephen Martin after he failed to award Sunderland a penalty despite Luke O’Nien appearing to be tripped by Oxford full-back Sam Long, in Tuesday night’s Carabao Cup game.
With the score tied at 1-1 and heading for a penalty shoot-out, Parkinson was adamant that his side should have been given in the last few minutes of normal time, after seeing one appeal waved away in the first half.
The game went to penalties where Oxford progressed to the quarter-finals after a 4-2 shoot-out win.
Speaking of the refereeing display, Parkinson told The Shields Gazette: “The officials have got to take a long, hard look at themselves tonight, there’s one [penalty] in the first half when the goalkeeper absolutely poleaxes Lynchy.”
The former Bolton manager continued: “Then the second one, Luke is about to pull the trigger and put the ball in the back of the net. There’s not a lot of contact but there’s enough to bring him down and the referee is ten yards away.”
Parkinson, expressing his fury with the decision, went on to say: “I am absolutely gobsmacked that we didn’t get a penalty. I’ve had the benefit of seeing it back again obviously but for me there’s no reason at all he shouldn’t give that, he’s in a great position, everyone in the ground can see it’s a penalty, apart from one person.”
Max Power and Will Grigg both missed good chances to put Sunderland ahead in the match and Parkinson has reiterated his call for his side to be more prolific in front of goal.
Despite not being happy with the officials, Parkinson did admit: “We’ve got to show more conviction around the opposition goal.”
On first instinct I thought it was a penalty and Parkinson has every right to feel aggrieved that his side weren’t awarded the spot kick.
Long clearly does make contact with O’Nien and with the referee’s position being so close does make you wonder why he didn’t opt to award it.
Unfortunately Parkinson will be well aware that you don’t always get the rub of the green in football and it is good of him to acknowledge that his team need to start taking their chances in front of goal.
The Black Cats wasted several good chances throughout the game and this could also prove costly for their league position if this was to continue, after costing them in the cup.
Sunderland face Southend United at home on Saturday and given their opponents’ recent form, will see this as a must win match.