Dalglish: People may fear refereeing conspiracy

Kenny Dalglish believes that Premier League referees remaining silent over controversial decisions means that "people might think there is a conspiracy".


Ahead of the Reds' trip to Blackburn Rovers on Tuesday night, the Liverpool manager bemoaned a string of calls made by officials which he feels have contributed to his team's return of just one win from their last nine league matches.

The 61-year-old coach believes that his team were denied penalties in recent games against Aston Villa and Newcastle and had a goal wrongly disallowed in last month's home defeat to Wigan.

"The last three games there are blatant decisions that have gone against us that are, frankly, inexcusable, and I'd say unexplainable as well," said Dalglish.

"I won't raise it with the Referees' Association, I've raised it now, and it's up to them. I think it really should be their concern. I've raised it, and it's up to them now to look at it.

"If they have something like (the denied penalty against Villa), a decision that isn't given that is so blatantly wrong - as we have felt in our last three games - then surely it is their problem, not mine."

Dalglish may now run the risk of an FA charge after questioning the integrity of match officials at a time following a weekend in which Queens Park Rangers manager Mark Hughes and Wigan boss Roberto Martinez both lamented highly controversial decisions that went against their own sides.

Later on Monday, Fulham also felt they were on the receiving end of a costly incorrect decision when referee Mark Clattenburg awarded Chelsea a spot-kick in the 1-1 draw at Craven Cottage.

"I know we have integrity, I know we have integrity in bucketloads, but I can't speak for other people and whether they have integrity," Dalglish continued.

"What we have to do now, is ensure this football club maintains its integrity, that the players keep their integrity, and hope that people elsewhere have some integrity too. (Referees) have to look at themselves and ensure they are seen to have integrity."

Dalglish wants to see referees explain their decisions when asked, or at least admit culpability when they clearly make the wrong choice in order for those within the game and the watching public to maintain faith in officials.

"The unfortunate thing for this football club in the last three games is that when there are decisions that are wrong - and there will always be decisions that are wrong - then there is never an explanation of why," he said.

"It would be helpful and more transparent if they told us, if they explained the decisions to us, or even just held their hands up and say, 'sorry I got that wrong', and we can see they have integrity. But they never say anything.

"We don't get everything right, do we? So it is understandable they don't either. But a wee bit of respect towards us would help the situation immensely. Otherwise, people might think there is a conspiracy.

"We can't believe that, we can't let it affect us, and take it into the games coming up, because that would damage us. We have to keep going, and ensure it doesn't affect the players."

Liverpool, whose place in the Europa League next season is assured by virtue of them winning the Carling Cup, face local rivals Everton in their FA Cup semi-final clash at Wembley on Saturday.

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