Home » O’Neil rues ‘possibly worst decision I’ve ever seen’

O’Neil rues ‘possibly worst decision I’ve ever seen’

Wolves boss Gary O’Neil says the decision to disallow a last-gasp equaliser for his team against West Ham was “possibly the worst decision I have ever seen”.

Skipper Maximilian Kilman thought he had levelled in the ninth minute of stoppage time with a header that beat Lukasz Fabianski and found the far corner.

However, video assistant referee Tim Robinson spotted substitute Tawanda Chirewa in an offside position in front of Fabianski and after being sent to the pitchside monitor, referee Tony Harrington decided the 20-year-old was in the West Ham keeper’s line of vision.

O’Neil, whose side have been on the wrong end of decisions on a number of occasions this season, starting with their opening-day defeat at Manchester United, was incredulous.

He went to see Harrington after the final whistle but explained he was so angry the referee refused to speak to him.

O’Neil accepts his words might land him in trouble, but he feels the injustice was so great that he had to try and make his feelings known.

“It was a terrible decision,” O’Neil said. “It is possibly the worst decision I have ever seen.

“If your knowledge and understanding of the game is really poor, you could reach the conclusion that is offside.

“If you are a Premier League official working at the highest level, I would be really disappointed if you thought that was offside. The only way that can be offside is if he stops Fabianski’s ability to move or impedes his vision. Only the referee and VAR think that could possibly be offside.”

O’Neil said both Fabianski and West Ham manager David Moyes had told him they felt the goal should have stood.

Moyes did not say that to the media afterwards but did admit he “felt for Gary”.

“After some of the decisions we have had this season, I have felt like sitting in a dark room for a week,” added the Scot.

O’Neil went to have a better look at the incident while the match was continuing, knowing that another yellow card would lead to a touchline ban given he has had two cautions already this season.

However, he was not placated.

He spoke to Harrington on the pitch and then said he went to the referee’s room afterwards which “didn’t go too well”.

“I wasn’t able to control my emotion well enough to get an explanation,” O’Neil said. “The referee said he would rather not discuss it given how I was acting.”

O’Neil was unsure whether he would be reported for his emotional reaction.

“Possibly. I don’t know,” he said. “If he reports it and I get told off, so be it. I have been told off many times before.

“I will apologise if I have stepped over the line, but I can only react on how I feel in the moment and I was in a fairly bad mood at the final whistle.”

O’Neil said he has had to stop his players taking their grievances further already this season, given they do not believe they are being “respected”.

However, he added that in light of Saturday’s events, there was nothing he could do to stop them.

“I have talked them down before, but I can’t expect to do that this time. They are incredibly frustrated at the decisions this season,” O’Neil said.

“It is very hard for me to stand in front of them with any integrity and tell them they are wrong. We will see how they feel about it next week.”

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