Opposition view: U's boss Brown describes refereeing performance as 'one of the worst I've seen' after last-gasp defeat to Cobblers

Northampton Town 3 Colchester United 2

By James Heneghan
Saturday, 30th July 2022, 9:32 pm
Wayne Brown.
Wayne Brown.

Colchester United manager Wayne Brown described Martin Woods’ refereeing performance in Saturday’s opening-day defeat against Northampton as ‘by far one of the worst I’ve seen’.

Sam Hoskins fired the Cobblers into a 27th-minute lead at Sixfields but Colchester were awarded a debatable penalty just before half-time, Tyler Magloire the man harshly penalised, just about converted by Freddie Sears.

Northampton were awarded their own contentious spot-kick late in the contest as Hoskins scored his second of the afternoon after an apparant handball by Junior Tchamadeu, only for Noah Chilvers to make it 2-2 moments later. However, Town walked away with the spoils thanks to a dramatic late winner from substitute Ryan Haynes.

The penalty calls were just two of numerous controversial and somewhat bewildering decisions made by Woods, who has been promoted to the EFL this season, throughout the game.

“Obviously the result is all that matters but I felt it was a real disciplined performance by us,” said Brown. “All goals are avoidable and I thought for the first one, our pockets in front of the back four were a bit too big and it comes from our throw-in, which was disappointing.

“But this group keeps going and I thought we contained them. They did have more of the ball but they didn’t really hurt us and it was about staying in the game and that’s exactly what we did.

“Their first opportunity in the second-half was after 25 minutes and that’s testament to the lads and the fact that they were well-drilled and structured and organised and they contained what is a very strong Northampton team.

“We created more in that 25 minutes than in the whole of the first-half, which was also pleasing, but you’re going to get some knocks in this game and we had a few today.

“I have never been one to hide behind referees or decisions or mistakes but that’s by far one of the worst refereeing performances that I have witnessed. It was for both sides. There was just no consistency. I haven’t seen the penalty we got in the first-half but for their one, the defender gets hit from three yards away and they are saying that’s handball. If that’s handball, then what are we doing?

“The lads have worked their socks off all pre-season, as have Northampton, and you need those things to go for you. It’s just about having a little bit of common sense. Junior (Tchamadeu) was kicked in the head in the first half but nothing was given, not even a yellow card, which is shocking at any level.

“But I’m not here to hide behind referee and decisions. We will get more go against us but the boys kept going and we even had a chance in the final minute to score and it should be in the back of the net.”