Ben Garner insists officials must be stronger after feisty derby



Posted Sunday, January 23, 2022 by PA

Ben Garner insists officials must be stronger after feisty derby

Swindon head coach Ben Garner called on referees to crack down on consistent fouling after seven yellow cards were handed out in their 1-1 draw at home to Bristol Rovers.

Tyreece Simpson’s curling shot from the edge of the box put Swindon in front but Sam Finley’s equaliser 10 minutes before half-time ensured the points were shared in Wiltshire.

Following the game Garner said: “I’ve not seen anything back but I thought there were a few bad tackles in the game. That number of yellow cards in the game is a lot and I think there was a lot of consistent fouling.

“Jonny Williams was targeted and fouled time and time again and I would like to see officials being stronger with that.

“Bristol came to be aggressive and hopefully, the officials will look at themselves.

“I was really pleased with how we competed and I thought it was a difficult game. They were very aggressive and I was pleased with how we stood up to that.

“We weren’t as good with the ball as we normally are and I’d like us to have been a bit braver but we can improve on that.

“That’s four points from six against Bristol Rovers who are one of the biggest teams in the division with one of the biggest budgets.”

Simpson opened the scoring with his 11th goal of the season after a brilliant strike left the keeper scrambling across goal.

Robins goalkeeper Lewis Ward failed to deal with Sam Finley’s cross in the 35th minute as Aaron Collins obscured his view and the ball nestled in the back of the net to pull the visitors level.

The number of bookings across 90 minutes – six of them for Rovers – highlighted the emotional intensity of the derby encounter, with neither team able to find the consistency in attack required as a goalless second half was played out.

Rovers manager Joey Barton said: “We’re really pleased with the performance, coming here against a really good side and showing the way we want to play.

“For me, we dominated the game. We’re the team more likely to score and were restricting them to counter-attacks and there won’t be too many teams that come to the stadium this year and do that.

“We’ve limited them to I think three shots – they are a flowing and expansive attacking team, they really want to be on the front foot and their goal kind of came against the run of play.

“We didn’t panic, we just kept passing the ball and following the game plan and we got ourselves deservedly back into it.”

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