Sunday, 5 February 2017

Craig Thomson into my hall of shame

During the match between St Johnstone and Celtic, referee Craig Thomson made a truly dreadful decision. He must be ashamed of it. It was so bad that it goes into my hall of shame. For a penalty to be given at the highest level, well I am being generous here, the referee should be sure in his mind that the decision is clearly and certainly beyond all reasonable doubt. If in doubt then don't! That's a good maxim. Don't give it unless you are certain when refereeing. Now when you look at this decision in real time and look at the angles, the position of the defender's body, then you must err on the side of caution and therefore not award a penalty. In this case the defender did not handle the ball. It did not even brush his hand or arm. The defender did not control the ball, but it did hit his torso and go to the goalkeeper.

I have been arguing for video referral and appropriate technology to eliminate these howlers for years.

Does Craig Thomson need to go to Specsavers? Craig Thomson's decision to award Celtic a penalty is disgraceful. It possibly robbed St Johnstone of a victory, but it certainly left many fans seething. We do not know the result of the anger and the wrath of the fans. Did it bring violence which could have been avoided? This dreadful decision could have been avoided by technology, technology that shows what a dreadful referee can do to a game.

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