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Mark of shame

Features - Chris Kamara Posted 29th October 2012 view comments

Every Saturday, Chris Kamara heads to stadiums up and down the country to deliver his unique match reports for Soccer Saturday.

On Sundays you can see him back in the Sky Sports studios as he brings you all of the highlights as well as in-depth analysis of all the action on Goals on Sunday.

And then on Mondays you can find Kammy right here on as he brings you his views on the weekend.

No grey areas.... Mark Clattenburg got the Torres red card totally wrong

Torres: didn't dive, says Kammy

Torres: didn't dive, says Kammy

This was an absolutely shocking decision. How on earth can they think he dived? When the ball went through Jonny Evans' legs, the defender had nowhere to go and there simply had to be contact. There were no ifs or buts about it - the player can't disappear and he was always going to make contact. I've seen it happen a million times. So Fernando Torres went down and whether or not the contact was minimal it was a very poor decision to give him a second yellow card.

Maybe Mark Clattenburg was trying to show everybody that if there was a dive during one of his games he would make sure he sent them off - but sometimes they don't know the difference. The issue of diving is a tricky one and it's been highlighted more this season, but what is a dive? Should a player allow himself to be kicked before he goes down or can he anticipate the contact? It's a very grey area, but in this particular instance it's not a grey area. Once the ball went through Evans' legs, he can't disappear and there was always going to be minimal contact. Evans' expression told you everything; he looked straight at the referee and thought he was going to be booked!

The assistant referees SHOULD be able to spot key offside decisions

On Goals on Sunday we analysed Arsenal's winning goal and the assistant referee was looking right across the line and should be able to see that Mikel Arteta was offside when the ball was played forward by Aaron Ramsey. He's only got a few jobs in instances like that and looking out for offside is one of those jobs.

It was exactly the same at Stamford Bridge. The assistant should have been looking across the line and he should have seen that Javier Hernandez was offside. There are no ifs or buts about it. That's nothing new and Clattenburg has been let down by his assistant, just as Anthony Taylor was let down in the Arsenal game. It's part and parcel of the game and you accept that; some weeks you get it and some weeks you don't. You just hope they improve - and maybe some of the assistants need a refresher on the laws of the game so they know exactly what they're looking out for.

At the moment, I don't understand the complaint about Mark Clatteburg's language

Yes, Chelsea should complain about Clatteburg for having a poor game, but I don't understand them complaining about 'inappropriate language'. If a referee showed a yellow card every time foul language or a derogatory remark was used by players then we'd end up with five-a-side every week. Stuff comes out in the heat of the moment and if referees were to capitalise on that then the players would be in all sorts of trouble. I always had a bit of banter with the refs in my playing days and sometimes they'd tell me to do one. You have more affinity with them if they're honest with you, rather than taking offence to everything you said. To be fair, I shouldn't comment too much on this because I don't know what he's alleged to have said and we can't make any judgments until the full facts have come out.

Luis Suarez's goal celebration was absolutely brilliant...

Humour in the game is few and far between these days. Luis Suarez was told that David Moyes had highlighted the fact he was a diver and so he decided if he scored a goal (or a goal that he was claiming...) that he would go and do a dive in front of the Everton manager. Moyesy took it really well, which was great to see, because the game should be about fun. For one second I was worried about the reaction, but even though his team had just gone a goal down he managed to see the funny side of it. Suarez didn't go over with an evil expression to rub it in Moyes's face and it was a fun gesture.

... but he should have been awarded a winning goal in injury time

I've heard it argued that there was a foul on Phil Jagielka at the far post, so the officials ended up with the right outcome but I'm not so sure about that. To disallow a goal for offside was an error. Suarez attacked the situation, he wasn't stood in an offside position, so it was a poor decision by the officials. However, I'll finish talking about the Super Sunday games by saying both were outstanding matches. They were full of talking points and it reminds you why we love this game so much.

Manchester City had to dig deep to beat Swansea

People were making a lot of assumptions after Manchester City lost to Ajax in midweek. They were saying things weren't right in the camp, the manager wasn't happy with some of his players and the players weren't playing for the system. But at the end of the day, they are still unbeaten in the league and after all that disappointment in Europe they dug in and got a result. We saw Celtic put in a mammoth effort in midweek in Barcelona and they ended up getting turned over by Kilmarnock at the weekend. It's easy to let a major disappointment affect your domestic form, but the City players showed a lot of character.

Mark Hughes was let down by his own player - and the officials

Stéphane Mbia let down his manager and the rest of his team-mates with his senseless red card and then the officials let down QPR by not spotting that Arsenal's winning goal was offside. However, nobody will remember that at the end of the season; it's all about results. However, it was an important win for Arsenal because the crescendo of disquiet about Arsene Wenger would have increased if they had failed to beat QPR.

Dimitar Berbatov doesn't need to run around to be a great player

The game of the day on Saturday was Reading's 3-3 draw with Fulham; another Premier League classic, but when I listened to the radio on the way back from Villa Park on Saturday afternoon the reporter was being very disrespectful towards Dimitar Berbatov. He was criticising him for not running around and I assumed he must have had a shocker. Then I watched the game for myself on Sunday morning and thought he was absolutely outstanding; some people don't know a footballer when they see one! You don't have to run around at 300mph when you have his quality.

Aston Villa need to buy some experience in January

I was at Villa Park on Saturday and while Norwich were good, Aston Villa are still searching - and Paul Lambert knows that. His former club were the better team, but Villa got the opening goal against the run of play and dug in to get a point. They need to spend in January and strengthen the squad, that's for certain. It's very well playing youngsters, but they need some experience alongside them.

Comments (12)

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Pac Man (Manchester United fan) says...

Have a look at Torres face and he knew he was going to be booked. Clattenburg was right behind the incident and saw exactly what happened. If players are going to continue to "dive" then they can't be surprised when they get booked. Even if the ref was wrong, which i don't accept, players are now starting to suffer the consequences of their previous actions. If players hadn't spent years trying to con refs by diving then a compulsory booking for the offence would not need to be brought in. Don't blame the refs blame the players.

Posted 11:15 30th October 2012

Ryan Quinn (Manchester United fan) says...

See if I could I would love to submit an official complaint about Chelsea F.C. for bringing the game into disrepute, in my eyes the only reason they are complaining about Clattenburg because they are trying to save their completely damaged image and reputation over the Terry/Ferdinand affair. It is an absolute joke in my eyes, yes Clattenburg made a couple of dodgy decisions however just because Chelsea feel aggrieved they now cite him for using 'inappropriate language' which is meant to have a 'racist' edge. why would a man in Clattenburgs position dare jeopardize his standing in world football by abusing footballers, especially with all that has went on recently. Chelsea F.C. need to get back to the drawing board, back to basics and just play football. Football is becoming a bit of a farce and Chelsea are the center of it at the minute.

Posted 10:59 30th October 2012

Raido A (Chelsea fan) says...

Torres dived.Absolutley no question about it.He could have kept running but he chose to go down.The way he went down was not natural , therefor he tried to decieve the ref and was rightly sent off.

Posted 10:56 30th October 2012

Amit Kumar (Chelsea fan) says...

Should a player allow himself to be kicked before he goes down or can he anticipate the contact? -- these two lines said by kamara was explaining every thing........Referee need to understand situation and then react........sometimes it is necessary to dive to avoid any injury too.

Posted 06:16 30th October 2012

Moses Teng (Everton fan) says...

Referees are human being beings and human made mistake. The game is so fast sometimes they are expected to make a split decision. Off side goals will always happen just like players diving. Watched the Chelsea / man U game, yes there was a very slight contact, not on the sheen but on the boots and Torres could have easily carried on but he chose to go down. That how the ref interpret it. To eliminate all these fuss of wrong decision, FIFI should go towards using technology like tennis and rugby do. Otherwise that's the way the game will and move on.

Posted 04:35 30th October 2012

Thienchai Pariyapun (Everton fan) says...

Diving issue in recent month is totally pressure to EPL referees. I have some comments as following. 1. Is it a late tackle of Evan. .... Absolutely right 2. Does the tackle contact Torres or not? Many times watch a reply, he made a light contact that not to be hard to falling down his left leg in the following step. It is a light contact but heavily falling. 3. Watching carefully at Torres left leg, his left leg decided to landing when he saw Evan's tackle. I do think that Torres dives but red card is too heavy to accept. I think Mark consider that Torres lack of sportmanship.

Posted 03:32 30th October 2012

Karl Dron (Liverpool fan) says...

What's a dive? It's not tricky at all. If you go over without contact and appeal then it's a dive. If you go over and don't appeal then it's not. Any player who is about to potentially face injury is well within his rights to jump out of the way. The problem with refereeing is the FA is trying to improve it by decreasing the leeway a ref has when it's the very lack of common sense being applied that's creating the problems in the first place.

Posted 19:27 29th October 2012

Alex Kirkhouse (Swansea City fan) says...

Spot on about Berbatov! His movement for his goal should be something coached to all aspiring players! He didn't need a darting run through the middle of the defenders to get an opening, simply the ability to walk away from a crowd of ball watching defenders and pop the ball into the far corner with consumate ease. No disrespect, but amazes me how a 'bigger' team didn't snap him up.

Posted 18:30 29th October 2012

Damo Kilroy (Manchester United fan) says...

I have sympathy with refs here, but pundits are giving them a hard time. In real play, it looked like a dive. With slow-mo replays, yes there is contact, but enough to take the guy down? Have a look at Georgie Best staying on his feet after chopper Harris tries to mow him down! Did Torres dive? yes. Was there contact? yes. If referees are told to clamp down on diving, then this should be all diving! whether there is contact or not. A guy has two choices, try and stay on your feet or throw yourself to the ground. The fact that players can throw themselves to the ground and then be vindicated on replays because there was indeed 'contact' is ridiculous. The more people are booked for this diving, then the less they will do it. You can defend Torres all day with 'there was contact!' talk, but he did then take a dive. if we are to clamp down on this, then it has to be complete. It;s difficult to tell for a ref without the benefit of replays and slow-mo's, to tell if there is contact when it is so minimal, but what was easier to see is that Torres dived. As for the investigation, if he did use a racial slur, then that is despicable, but for his decision on Torres, I think it was a brave and correct decision. He took a dive, whether there is contact or not... and diving is what we want to get rid of.

Posted 18:05 29th October 2012

John Ludo (Chelsea fan) says...

torres did not deserve to be sent off.if torress wasnt sent out man u would have gone down 4-2 to chelsea

Posted 15:26 29th October 2012

Gordon Gilchrist (Newcastle United fan) says...

Agree with some of your points but not the decision to give Torres a second yellow and subsequent red, yeh, he nutmegged Johnny Evans but Rio Ferdinand was there to clear the ball away, so maybe he thought the best option was to go down, after there was minimal contact from Johnny Evans. But at the end of the day its the players themselves that have been doing the diving so they have sort of brought about the situation themselves.. As for offside decisions, as things stand the referees assistants have fractions of second to make decision, whereas Sky have multi cameras, plus technical enhancements to analysis the situation so the odds against the assistant are heavily stacked against them getting every one right. Yes Saurez's goal should have stood in injury time, but by then he should not even have been on the field after the clip on Distin, Personally I think he survived because of who he was, Andre Mariner ducked out of that in exactly the same way as he ducked out of a second yellow for Sterling and a subsequent red. These sort of decisions effect everyone, players, fans etc there does not appear to be a level playing field, just look at the referees stats per game over the last couple of seasons and the same referees are at the top in each season as far as Yellows and Reds are concerned.

Posted 14:46 29th October 2012

David Rolph (Norwich City fan) says...

Clearly there was contact between Evans and Torres. But equally clear was the sudden loss of movement afterwards in the other leg - and down he went. I agree with Alex Ferguson's comment - a confident forward would have tried to continue and score. Hitting the deck every time somebody makes contact with you and, even worse, causing the contact to happen (for example by suddenly stopping when ahead of a defender), are all symptoms of a modern day disease in the game. Commentators who support players in these acts are doing a disservice to the game that provides their livelihood and demonstrates a complete lack of moral fibre.

Posted 14:08 29th October 2012

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