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Stoke to complain over referee

Chairman Peter Coates plans to make an official complaint regarding the performance of referee Martin Atkinson in Stoke's defeat at Newcastle.

Last Updated: 28/12/13 at 09:13 Post Comment    Bet with SkyBet  Stoke City Specials 13/14 To Qualify for Europe: To Qualify for Europe through league position or winning a trophy 12/1

Martin Atkinson: Gives Glenn Whelan his marching orders

Martin Atkinson: Gives Glenn Whelan his marching orders

Atkinson sent off both Glenn Whelan and Marc Wilson, as well as Stoke boss Mark Hughes, in the space of five first-half minutes as Stoke surrendered an early 1-0 lead to suffer a 5-1 defeat on Boxing Day.

Stoke's complaints extend beyond the dismissals as there was an apparent handball in the build-up to Loic Remy's equaliser while Hatem Ben Arfa appeared to carry the ball out of play before pulling it back for Yoan Gouffran to score.

While Hughes is facing an FA charge of improper conduct, Coates is planning to make his own grievances known.

"The performance of the referee and his officials was a disgrace, and we will certainly be complaining to the relevant authorities," he said in the Daily Telegraph.

"We cannot accept what happened to us at Newcastle without making some form of representation. It's then up to the officials what they do, but we found it hugely disappointing because there were so many poor decisions.

"There was no common sense applied and I don't think either of the yellow cards for Glenn Whelan were deserved. For one of the goals I could clearly see the ball was out of play, sitting high up in the stands.

"The sendings-off completely changed the game. We were playing ever so well up to the dismissals, leading 1-0, but when you're down to nine men you've got no chance. It's not a case of sour grapes, we simply cannot accept what happened."

Bet with SkyBet  Stoke City Specials 13/14 To Qualify for Europe: To Qualify for Europe through league position or winning a trophy 12/1

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may well get slated by other United fans for this, but out of the three contenders, I'd far prefer Liverpool to win the title. Yes some elements of their fanbase can be a bit OTT, yes they're our biggest rivals and yes it will make our poor season feel even more like the end of an era (Fergie's gone, Liverpool are back on top). However I just have to applaud Brendan Rodgers and the way he's turned Liverpool around in just a couple of seasons. It...

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ooray! We are all excited now, we beat a very mediocre team! With all due respect to WHU supporters, not winning that game shouldn't even be a consideration. This is the problem, there is no winning mentality at the Emirates - we're all congratulating ourselves beating a team that we have a winning record against.

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