Dermot Gallagher insists it will set dangerous precedent if Chelsea can pick referees
Dermot Gallagher insists it would set a dangerous precedent if Chelsea are allowed to hand-pick referees.
Last Updated: 17/03/14 12:59pm
Gallagher's comments come following remarks from Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho after his team's 1-0 defeat by Aston Villa on Saturday.
Mourinho suggested the referees' committee should think about keeping Chris Foy away from Chelsea matches after he sent off both Willian and Ramires, and then the Blues boss, at Villa Park.
The dismissal of the duo took the number of Chelsea players ordered off by Foy to six in his last eight games involving the London club.
Alex was sent off against Fulham, Jose Bosingwa and Didier Drogba were given red cards in the same match against Queens Park Rangers, while Eden Hazard walked after an encounter with a ball boy at Swansea.
But Gallagher defended Foy and insists the official was correct with five of his decisions, and while he feels Willian was wrongly ordered off against Villa, the ex-official insists the Ramies judgement was "absolutely a red card every day of the week".
Gallagher said: "Prior to that match he'd sent off four Chelsea players. All four absolutely correct.
"Bosingwa - denied a goalscoring opportunity. Drogba - bad tackle. Alex - denying a goalscoring opportunity. Eden Hazard - violence towards a ball boy. All four absolutely correct.
"You can do what you want with stats. You can't knock a referee for making correct decisions. It's a very dangerous thing to say a referee's not going to referee this team."
Gallagher had some sympathy for another match official over the weekend after Mark Clattenburg dismissed Manchester United defender Nemanja Vidic in his team's 3-0 defeat to Liverpool.
Vidic picked up a second yellow card when he was adjudged to have tripped Daniel Sturridge in the penalty area.
Television replays showed there was no contact, and while Gallagher reckons the Liverpool striker made no attempt to stay on his feet, he believes Clattenburg had no option to make his choice given his view of the incident.
Gallagher said: "I really, really felt for the referee there. It's not a penalty.
"From the referee's angle it's 100 per cent a penalty. It just looks a penalty. Everybody thought it was a penalty, Vidic didn't obviously.
"He doesn't try to hurdle him."
But Gallagher believes Liverpool should have been awarded a spot-kick shortly after that when Michael Carrick tripped Sturridge.
"Carrick fouls. Whether Mark just thought he slipped, I don't know, but as Sturridge has turned into him, he's just caught him. I think maybe the way he's gone down, Mark's thought he slipped."