It is not often that a referee awards three penalties in a game and receives not criticism. Throw in an additional sending off and still not criticism and one would think the man in black/yellow or green, has had a good game. Peter Green the man in the middle for the Perth Glory against Melbourne Victory certainly did have a good game.
He bravely and correctly awarded a penalty against Victory’s Adrian Leijer for holding in the box, after he had just warned the player, when many would have had another word. He was also correct with both of the other spot kick decisions.
Initially many in the crowd felt that Steve Pantelidis may have milked Danny Allsopp’s high challenge that saw the Victory striker sent from the field, especially as following treatment there was absolutely no limp as he left the field to rejoin play after receiving treatment. On the replays again the referee was spot on the challenge was high and studs were raised.
Yet after the game everyone was talking about three decisions he did not give in the game.
In the 16th minute Kewell was late and high with a challenge on Glory’s Evan Berger. He received quite rightly a yellow card, although many wondered if a player such as Jacob Burns or Steve Pantelidis had been guilty of the challenge whether they would have got off so lightly. Reputations rightly or wrongly affecting outcomes.
Then in the second half there were not one, but two occasions where Harry Kewell appeared to dive searching for a penalty. One of these instants it appeared it was either a penalty, or a dive. The referee did not award the penalty; therefore it should have been a dive and a yellow card, which would have meant that the Victory’s star man was having an early bath.
The card never came and Kewell has since admitted that he “technically” dived.
Having had such an outstanding game it was sad that Mr. Green was remembered for the decision he failed to make rather than the good ones he did make.
We have witnessed it with Kevin Muscat, Craig Moore and now Harry Kewell, big name players who bring people through the turnstiles, who appear to get away with challenges that others would not based on their reputations. If the A League is to be taken seriously this must stop now.