Mohun Bagan send second letter in as many days to AIFF over referee bias | football | Hindustan Times
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Mohun Bagan send second letter in as many days to AIFF over referee bias

Mohun Bagan director Debasish Dutta says in his letter to the All India Football Federation (AIFF) that he has never seen referees’ decisions rescinded even though it happens often enough in Europe.

football Updated: Feb 13, 2018 22:38 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Kolkata
Mohun Bagan director Debasish Dutta wrote to the All India Football Federation (AIFF) questioning the referee who oversaw their game vs Gokulam Kerala FC.
Mohun Bagan director Debasish Dutta wrote to the All India Football Federation (AIFF) questioning the referee who oversaw their game vs Gokulam Kerala FC. (AIFF)

One day after claiming that all infringements in the penalty area are bookable offences, Mohun Bagan director Debasish Dutta again wrote to the All India Football Federation (AIFF) this time hinting at provincialism of referee R Palmson Moses Raj.

Raj had the whistle in Monday’s I-League game between Mohun Bagan and Gokulam Kerala FC here which the visitors won 2-1.

“…the panel of referees were from southern part of India, we had our hunch that things might go awry and unerringly our intuition was comprehend (sic). It is necessary to make an official complaint about the performance of referee Mr. Palmson Raj,” the letter to AIFF general secretary Kushal Das said on Tuesday. Copies of the letter were released to the media.

The letter then lists what, according to Dutta, were instances of poor refereeing including Mohun Bagan being denied a penalty in the 35th minute. The letter ends asking the AIFF where Palmson Raj should be given more games.

In the letter, Dutta also mentions how in 20 years of watching football he had never seen a referee decision being revoked. He was referring to the AIFF’s Disciplinary Committee doing that on Sunday because the wrong player was shown the red card for what the referee thought was a second bookable offence.

This happened to a Chennai City FC player against Mohun Bagan. Instead of sending off Chennai City’s Tarif Akhand, Edwin Vanspaul was shown the red card.

While Dutta, a regular at World Cup finals, may not have seen it, rescinding a refereeing decision happens regularly in Europe’s top flight. Referee Mike Dean’s sending off of West Ham’s Sofiane Feghouli against Manchester United in January 2017 was overturned.

Last September, Aston Villa’s Henri Lansbury’s red card in their EFL Cup game against Middlesbrough was also overturned.

And in March 2014, Arsenal successfully appealed for Kieran Gibbs’ red card to be revoked after Gibbs was mistakenly shown the red card by referee Andre Marriner during a Premier League game against Chelsea.