Andre Marriner was this morning still being hailed as a national treasure after plucking up the courage to gift Chelsea a penalty for basically nothing.
The referee, iconic, faced a difficult decision at Stamford Bridge on Saturday as the football match he was officiating looked set to result in an unseemly West Bromwich Albion victory.
In what is already being described as “decisive action”, Marriner decreed that the big, money-spinning home team get a last-gasp shot at levelling matters against their unglamorous underling, who had already caused ructions by winning at Old Trafford in September.
However, not everyone was impressed by Marriner’s efforts in restoring order – speaking exclusively to Football Burp, Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho was adamant that the penalty should have been awarded on a ‘last goal wins’ basis.
He irritably mumbled: “Of course I am disappointed – the referee has cost us two points.
“He is a good referee, one of the best in the world, but ultimately he has allowed West Brom to come away from Stamford Bridge with a point and that is unacceptable.
“We need the referees to be onside with the big boys because that is worth 10-15 points a season for us.
“Because of Marriner today, maybe we end the season with only 8-13 extra points. This can make the difference between title and no title.
“As you can see from the picture, I was at least happy to preserve my unbeaten home record – but if you look at the referee in the background, that looks too big to be a whistle at his lips.
“I am thinking it is maybe a hash pipe, and that is why we do not win.”
Steve Clarke probably said some stuff too, but who the hell cares?