Coyle bemoans big decisions
Bolton boss Owen Coyle claims all of the big decisions went against his side in their defeat to Tottenham.
By Jamie Casey
Last Updated: 05/02/11 6:55pm
Bolton boss Owen Coyle claims all of the big decisions went against his side in their defeat to Tottenham on Saturday.
Niko Kranjcar smashed in an injury-time winner for Spurs in a 2-1 victory in a game which saw Harry Redknapp's side awarded two debatable penalties inside the first 10 minutes.
Rafael van der Vaart dispatched the first to open the scoring before seeing the second flash wide, after referee Mark Clattenburg had ordered a retake following an encroachment.
Coyle was reluctant to criticise Clattenburg directly but questioned the quality of refereeing in the Premier League as he disagreed with both decisions as well as a failed penalty appeal from Trotters defender Gary Cahill.
"Some major decisions certainly went against us all day," Coyle told Sky Sports.
"In the first half, [we went] behind to an early penalty which is up for debate and then to compound that with another penalty, in which Sam Ricketts clearly got a touch on the ball.
"We came out for the second-half with our tails up and got into the game and I felt we controlled it for large periods, we scored a good goal and we should have had a penalty.
"It was a stonewall penalty at 1-1. And then, again to compound it, Gary Cahill sees a yellow card which I found beyond belief.
"Here we are operating in the best league in the world and we have decisions made like that every week to managers in the Premier League like myself.
"And it's hard to take when players are applying themselves every week, showing tremendous quality and belief."
The first penalty was awarded for a handball against Bolton captain Kevin Davies, who knew little of the incident as the ball nestled against his arm inside the area.
Coyle admits he can understand why Clattenburg awarded it, but refused to accept that the second decision, in which Ricketts was adjudged to have felled Aaron Lennon, is up for debate.
Coyle said: "It's not an incident I would deem as deliberate but I can see why it was given. But the second one; Sam Ricketts has clearly played the ball.
"I don't know how that can be given as a penalty and then he's been booked as well."
To avoid losing his cool and risk punishment, Coyle deflected attention onto his side's gutsy performance in almost securing a point at White Hart Lane.
He said: "All I can say is I'm delighted with my players to come here on the back of a win over Wolves and they came here with real belief and to leave with nothing is a travesty."
Loan signing Daniel Sturridge scored on his full debut for the club, his second in two games after coming on to net the winner against Wolves on Wednesday, and Coyle believes there's more to come from the 21-year-old.
"He lit the place up every time he got the ball, he had two or three half chances in the first half, very positive, scored a good goal and looked the real deal all day," he said of Sturridge.
"I believe the more he plays with us the better he'll get."