Opposition view: Bowyer slams ref display despite City claiming 'deserved' victory over Cobblers

Gary Bowyer
Gary Bowyer

Bradford City manager Gary Bowyer shared Keith Curle's frustration over the performance of referee Leigh Doughty on Saturday despite his side coming from a goal down to 'deservedly' beat the Cobblers 2-1 at Valley Parade.

Doughty came under fire from players and supporters alike - on both sides - during Saturday's game and the two managers also expressed displeasure in their post-match interviews.

Curle in particular was unhappy and claimed Doughty had been swayed by his opposite number after he was confronted by the Bantams boss as the teams left the field for half-time.

Bowyer, speaking before Curle's commends, held his own reservations though, specifically regarding Zeli Ismail's last red card.

“For the first booking the lad was already going down and I thought the referee had blown to actually book the Northampton player for diving but he doesn't and he books Zeli," Bowyer said.

"The second one he doesn't do anything. The referee just wasn't good enough and it's easier for for me to say that today because if we had lost people would say I'm making excuses.

"I'm not making excuses. He wasn't good enough and they haven't been good enough this season. That's a worry because they're spoiling the game. They've got to be strong at Valley Parade but the officials that have come here haven't been good enough."

On the game itself, Bowyer felt his side were full value for all three points after late goals from Clayton Donaldson and Paudie O'Connor overturned Charlie Goode's first-half header.

"I didn't feel we deserved to be one goal down when we were," Boywer added.

"We had a good start and James Vaughan had a couple of decent chances early in the game but then we conceded a soft goal from a set-piece.

"We just said to the players at half time to calm down, relax, and go and express yourself. In terms of possession, number of shots and number of crosses, we were totally dominant in the second-half.

"You felt it was only a matter of time before we got ourselves back into the game. We were terrific, it was a great response from us, and the crowd were terrific as well."