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Pochettino tells referees: Don't judge us by our good looks!
7:34am Tuesday 31st December 2013 in Sport
Mauricio Pochettino has called for fair treatment for his side from referees amid fears they are being judged on their good looks.
“We don’t want to be judged by our young, handsome, good looking players that we have,” he admitted.
The Saints boss is still fuming at what he deems to be the latest injustice to befall his team this season as referee Mark Clattenburg failed to award either of two good penalty shouts in the defeat at Everton.
Pochettino has shied away from criticising referees during his 11-month tenure at St Mary’s, but could hold his tongue no longer.
He said: “I am completely angry about some of the refereeing decisions. There is not just one but two clear penalties that were not given to us.
“We have been suffering this all season long, many injustices that haven’t gone our way.
“I said after the game as well it is easier to referee a Southampton side where we are all young and friendly and young players. It’s very easy to have decisions not go for us. It’s a lot easier to have decisions go against us.”
He added: “I don’t want my players to be nasty, we just want Southampton to be refereed with the same rigour as all other clubs are judged.
“We want the same treatment as all other clubs – nothing better, nothing worse, just the same.
“We don’t want to be judged by our young, handsome, good looking players that we have.
“We don’t want to be judged in that sense, we want to be judged in the same manner and the same rigour and the same way as all other clubs do.
“We just want what’s fair basically.”
Pochettino ensured he stayed the right side of the line when talking about the referees and underlined he was not being disrespectful, but insisted he had to speak out.
“I think in the end if you don’t talk you seem almost as if you are dumb so I am talking because I want to defend my club. It’s my duty to defend my club.
“These things need to be said and I am actually defending my club because it is my club and I think if I don’t talk I am going to seem as if I am dumb or I don’t care about my club.
“I don’t mean any disrespect against any referees but anyone that could have seen the game yesterday (Sunday) can see there were two clear penalties that weren’t given and should have been given.
“That would have changed the game completely but they weren’t given and of course we are angry and upset about that.”
Pochettino believes that referees are more likely to give decisions to big name clubs and players who will complain and said: “That is the case and it shouldn’t be that way. They shouldn’t be conditioned to referee in that manner but that is the way it is.”
Saints have been given two penalties in the first half of this Premier League this season, with one against them.
Last season they were handed just three. Only five top flight clubs had worse records than that while Chelsea were given 11.
They conceded five, a record which was also only beaten by five clubs, including Manchester United with none and Chelsea with one.
“I think the same referee (Clattenburg) refereed during our game at Norwich last season,” said Pochettino.
“He called a penalty in the last minute which was actually saved by Boruc and yesterday (Sunday) he didn’t give two clear penalties that should have been given.
“If those penalties had been given we could be talking about a completely different story.
“We could be talking about a very young, brave side that went to a very tough stadium such as Everton and got a very positive result and that wasn’t the case.
“The story could be all completely different if those two penalties had been given.”
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