Colin Randalltakes an old Fleet Street confrère to task for suggesting our win against Liverpool should be cancelled out …
Most of the time, I enjoy Mike Parry and TalkSport (can’t bring myself to start the name in lower case and then write the second syllable in upper).
This morning, Mike was talking nonsense. Yes, the beach ball goal ought to have been disallowed. But to proceed from there to the proposition that on this one and only occasion, a clear injustice should be remedied by having the game played again is absurd and unfair.
Does Mike also think we should turn back the clock and replay the game at Reading when Sunderland lost to a “goal” when nearly everyone in the ground knew, and replays confirmed, that the ball did not cross the line?
And hey, as my (Liverpool-supporting) daughter has just reminded me – yes, I know, failed as a father – what about Gary McAllister? Do we go all the way back to his infamous dive from somewhere near the banks of the Wear that somehow ended in our penalty area, enabling that refereeing Graham from Tring (Graham P Barber, no less, not Mr Poll) to award a penalty and an undeserved point to Liverpool.
Or do errors leading to goals being awarded need to be corrected only when the aggrieved party is one of the Big Four?
Liverpool had an hour and a half to play their way back into the game and make the refereeing error meaningless. Instead, they were largely outplayed until a typically nervy finish and should have lost by three goals or more. Sunderland had a lot less time to do anything about Reading’s dodgy winner (also, let us remember, in an important Premier game) – or about a host of other grossly wrong decisions that have cost us vital points.
Even if the beach ball had been tossed on to the field of play by a Sunderland fan, the argument would be the same. A mistake by officials cannot be rectified after the event by altering a result. Otherwise, we’d need a special panel to make a dozen rulings after each weekend and wouldn’t know the actual league tables much before midweek.
Rafa, for all his despicable conduct when Kenwyne Jones was badly hurt, accepted the defeat with some grace. Mike Parry, and not because he is an Evertonian, should let us all move on and leave our points alone.
* See also: The day the balloon went up
* Photo of Mike Parry by courtesy of TalkSport