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Swansea City boss Michael Laudrup angry over wall of silence

By South Wales Evening Post  |  Posted: March 13, 2013

Michael Laudrup

Bemused Swansea City's Michael Laudrup has been left frustrated by the wall of silence after the controversial defeat at the Hawthorns

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MICHAEL Laudrup has admitted he cannot understand the wall of silence put up in the wake of Swansea City's goal that never was at West Brom.

Even four days on, the Swansea manager remains frustrated about the decision to chalk off Roland Lamah's late strike at the Hawthorns for offside.

And he is also upset about the lack of either an apology or explanation of what went on.

Swansea were on the end of one of the poorest offside calls seen in the Premier League this season when Lamah's effort was ruled out even though he was played in by not one but two Albion players. Assistant referee Lee Betts raised his flag, and referee Lee Mason failed to spot his colleague's error.

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"I haven't had a call from the referee, the linesman or from anyone at their organisation," Laudrup said.

"And I haven't read anything in the newspapers from the referee or the linesman either, and now I have learned that in this country the press are not allowed to speak to them.

"In Denmark, Spain or Italy, the press go and ask the referee in this situation — they ask why or what.

"But if that's not allowed here, there could be no reaction at all and then next weekend everyone forgets about it and you go on.

"I don't think that's fair and I don't think that's right."

Lancashire referee Mason will not take charge of a fixture this weekend, but a Premier League spokesman has stressed to the Evening Post that he has not been punished. Laudrup suggested in the immediate aftermath of West Brom that blundering officials ought to be taken off duty for a couple of weeks if errors are made.

But according to the league, officials will only be stood down in exceptional circumstances and, as glaring as the Lamah error was, it was not deemed to be in that bracket. Mason will be the fourth official at Manchester United's game with Reading this weekend, while Betts is due to run the line at Southampton for their meeting with Liverpool. With 18 referees currently on the top-flight roster, it is inevitable that some will not take charge of a game every weekend.

The fact that Mason has not been sanctioned is only likely to add to Laudrup's frustration as he reflects on a point lost.

It is thought the Dane has been contacted by the League Managers' Association this week, but there has been nothing as yet from refereeing boss Mike Riley.

"I had a call from somebody who wanted to show their sympathy with me and with us," Laudrup added.

"But I would like to get at least some reaction from the officials and the referee chief as well.

"I think the minimum is just to recognise a huge mistake.

"If you make a mistake in football or in normal life, you have to accept it. Why shouldn't referees or linesmen do the same?

"If nobody is allowed to speak to them officially then people just forget these mistakes, and I don't think that's correct.

"There are different levels of (refereeing) mistakes, and this was a major one."

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8 comments

  • cyril392  |  March 14 2013, 12:22AM

    My 2 penn'orth copied from an earlier article on the subject. BTW, It's a management tactic called "sweeping it under the carpet"........ Er.... notwithstanding everything else that went on in this game, we were simply cheated out of a draw by: a) an incompetent linesman/ass. ref./whatever; b) an equally incompetent and/or gutless ref who is either as ignorant of the rules of offside as his colleague, or didn't have the guts to overule him (take your pick - we'll never really know cos Establishment organisations like the FA close ranks and take care of their own!). Rather than taking the officials to task, the FA are more likely to (try to) discipline MIchael Laudrup for speaking the truth. Bit like Fergie criticising Ash for kicking the ball at RvP - deflects the heat from the real issue which is the incompetence of their own people. Frankly I've seen better decision-making and "team-work" by officials on the pitches at Ashleigh Road. Or to quote Sybil Fawlty, "I've seen more organised creatures running around farmyards with their heads cut off". How much are these clowns getting paid? Last I heard, PL refs were on £70-80K p.a.! For that sort of money, not knowing the rules and/or not concentrating properly for the full duration of the game should be a sackable offence on the grounds of gross inefficency. As was remarked afterwards on the TV, this wasn't even about interpretation of what CAN often be a difficult rule to apply in the proper fashion; it was black and white (no pun intended). "Gissajob - I could do that - put the corner-flags and the nets up too". Middle managers - don't you just love them."

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  • Scribe2  |  March 13 2013, 7:37PM

    This is another example where a referee and assistant have dropped an absolute clanger. Criticise them and you risk a touchline ban or fine, even both. Perhaps it is about time that assessors should publish their reports because it seems they all run a closed shop with the sole intention of covering each others' backs.

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  • GorsseinonJoe  |  March 13 2013, 6:10PM

    Welcome to a Welsh club in an English heirachy Mr Laudrup, as all the others have said, if it had been any of the "big" clubs the ref would be officiating a Blue Square game for the next month and the likes of Mr Ferguson would have had the FA crawling from London to Manchester to apologise. It's hard enough in the Premier League but when we are treated like a club who shouldn't be there it becomes even harder.

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  • seasolder  |  March 13 2013, 2:26PM

    If the same incident had happened to one of the so called big clubs.--the media would have had a field day and all hell would have broken out

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  • seasolder  |  March 13 2013, 2:22PM

    Typical of the media--If the same incident had happen to one of the so called big clubs all hell would have broken out.

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  • peter17776  |  March 13 2013, 11:47AM

    could cost a place in the division and 750k...is that not serious enough then...?

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  • brochadav  |  March 13 2013, 11:03AM

    I agree, if this had been Manchester then Mason and the linesman would have ben lambasted by Ferguson and they would be doing the championsip next weekend. it's only Swansea though, so no action is deemed necessary.

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  • barrywelsh  |  March 13 2013, 10:06AM

    "but according to the league, officials will only be stood down in exceptional circumstances." Perhaps it is the name of the team affected and not the severity of the official`s error that determines what is deemed to be an exceptional circumstance!

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