West Ham players and manager slam quarter-final referee

Scott Parker has expressed his disappointment with referee Mike Jones over his handling of their FA Cup quarter-final tie at Stoke City on Sunday.

WEST HAM felt the performance of referee Mike Jones (above) was a contributory factor in their FA Cup quarter-final loss at Stoke City on Sunday.

Though the Hammers equaliser could certainly have been described as lucky as striker Freddie Piquionne controlled the ball with his hand before slipping it into the net, West Ham were unhappy at some of the other decisions and the way Stoke were able to get away with some of their roughhouse tactics on the pitch.

Striker Carlton Cole said: “I don’t really like to talk about referees, because I like to give them a fair crack of the whip, but I thought he could have done better today for us.

“It just didn’t work out that way. I’m not going to blame him for the defeat, because it was partly down to the players as well, but the way the game was conducted at times was not in our favour.”

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It was Cole’s handball in the defensive wall that led to the Stoke City winner, and midfielder Scott Parker was certainly unhappy with that decision from the referee.

“There were some tough decisions out there,” said Parker. “Conceding the second goal from the free kick, you can see he put his hands up to protect his face.

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“I can understand if his hands were outside, away from his body, but how can you give another free kick for that?”

Manager Avram Grant also thought that the Hammers should have had a penalty when James Tomkins was wrestled to the ground by Jonathan Walters, only for the referee to bizarrely penalise the West Ham defender - presumably for falling over!

The referee certainly made some poor decisions – the foul count read 15-5 against the Hammers – but when you consider the worst was probably allowing West Ham’s goal, then perhaps the protests don’t mean too much after all.

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