Peter Houston struggled to hold back his anger at Bobby Madden’s display after Falkirk lost 3-0 to St Johnstone in the Betfred Cup- claiming that a joke penalty was awarded against his side and that he’ll be keeping a close eye on the ref in other matches not involving Falkirk.
The FIFA whistler awarded the home side three first half penalties, two of which were converted, leaving the Falkirk boss feeling once again that the world was against him.
“I was wondering, if it was St Johnstone playing Celtic or Rangers would the penalties have been given quite as easily?” Houston asked the BBC. “”I’ll be watching very carefully.
“Paul Watson’s might have been, I’d accept that. The third one’s an absolute joke. You see the ball get played into the box, Luke Leahy – you lift your arms to go for the ball – leans in.
“The fourth official’s shouting stuff in the referee’s ear as well so I don’t know if he influenced the referee but it was never a penalty kick.
“I also looked at the incident where (Falkirk’s) John Baird’s looking to protect (the ball), Steven Anderson comes right through the back of him, doesn’t get anywhere near the ball and John goes to ground. So, in my opinion, we should have had a penalty there as well.”
Houston added: “We’ve got to go to a meeting on 8 August where the central-based guys meet the referees.
“If there are new directives we should probably have been told by now. If they’ve got a directive about getting a hold of people then great because I’ve been saying for years too much of it goes on.
“But I see it every single game I watch on television in every league, people get a hold of each other and penalty kicks are not given.
“Bobby Madden, who I’ll watch in particular, gave three penalty kicks, aided, I think, by the fourth official talking in his ear about ‘watch this one, watch that one’. So it’ll be interesting to see what happens.”