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Chelsea v West Brom: Controversial Penalty Ends Match

Chelsea’s midfielder Ramires was at the centre of the London club’s latest storm following the Chelsea v West Brom Premier League encounter because according to West Brom’s manager, “he was already on the way down before anyone was near him”.

The match saving penalty on the 95th minute preserved Jose Mourinho’s unbeaten home Premier League record but opened up the debate about referees favouring big clubs. West Brom were understandably annoyed with the decision, so much so that Captain Chris Brunt was booked for protesting to the referee. His protests and those of his fellow players continued after the match.

The contentious penalty was awarded after Ramires was challenged by Steven Reid. It wasn’t anything more than a slight nudge. Most observers wouldn’t even call it a shoulder barge so everyone was pretty surprised when Marriner’s whistle blew for a spot kick. West Brom head coach Steve Clarke called it “A bad decision has cost us two points,” and admitted that he was “I’m flabbergasted at the decision, I can’t believe he gave it, but I can’t change it. I’ve been in the game a long time and I knew he [Ramires] was already on the way down before anyone was near him. The referee has to be 100 per cent sure. How he can be 100 per cent sure is beyond me. It was not the correct decision.”

Clarke wouldn’t call it a dive when an interviewer used that word but added that “the onus is on the referee to make the right decision. He didn’t.” The West Brom complaints weren’t only vented by the club’s manager as the Steven Reid tweeted, “little old West Brom” to add to the longheld belief among football supporters that big clubs get the benefit from the referee.

Last month, Mourinho was the one arguing with the referee so within the Chelsea camp this has probably been seen as retribution. We’re expecting the FA to charge Reid with breaking some code of conduct for tweeting but we’re not so sure whether they’ll investigate the incident.

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