Coach slams critic’s ‘ridiculous’ call

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WEST Coast coach Adam Simpson says anyone suggesting Collingwood was “robbed” of the premiership based on a non-free kick call made late in the Grand Final is being “ridiculous”.

 

 

It comes after AFL 360 co-host Mark Robinson said Brayden Maynard deserved a free for being blocked by Willie Rioli as Dom Sheed marked and kicked what ended up as the flag-winning goal.

 

“Have watched it 30 times. It was a free kick 30 times,” Robinson tweeted, adding “#robbed”.

 

The AFL has since ticked off umpire Brett Rosebury’s call to not award a free kick in the situation.

 

On Fox Footy on Monday night, the Eagles coach said it would be “really disappointing” if people focused on that incident when analysing the match.

 

“I just really hope that is not that narrative and the story, the last free kick of the game,” he told On the Couch.

 

“It would be really disappointing if that’s what people focused on. It’s not the number one thing you take out of the Grand Final. There were so many special moments and I think we need to celebrate the game.

 

 

“There were free kicks missed like every week. The umpires are under the same pressure as the players almost. They are not going to get it all right. I know that was a big one and I can’t really tell if that was a free kick or not.

 

 

“If it was paid or not paid, we can dissect all these things. Anyone who reports that, it would be really disappointing.

 

“I think I might have seen one of the journalists put #robbed. Whether that was just being facetious or not, but clearly that’s a ridiculous statement.”

 

Earlier in the night on AFL 360, Robinson repeated his belief that it should have been a free kick.

 

“I think it’s a free kick. It’s not the be all and end all, I think it’s a free kick,” he said.

 

“But that doesn’t overshadow, in my opinion, and I’ve been dealing with some West Coast fans’ reactions to this… I think it’s a free kick.

 

“That (#robbed) was a gag! I should’ve said ‘just joking’.”

 

Geelong coach Chris Scott and St Kilda coach Alan Richardson were both in agreement that a free kick should not have been paid.

 

“It depends on the angle you were adjudicating it from. My first reaction was it was fine … on balance, and given the circumstance, I thought it was OK,” Richardson said.

 

Scott agreed, adding: “I think most of them have been paid this year in that situation, I thought the cues were there.

 

“I had a different view though, I don’t think that should be paid. I think you’re well within your rights to control your opponent’s body.

 

“I would’ve said across the course of the season, if it happened 100 times, it would have been paid 70.”

 

AFL 360 co-host Gerard Whateley pointed out that if it had been called a free kick, it might not have been particularly focused on.

 

“Had the free kick been paid, we would’ve thought not much of it, because you would’ve gone, ‘well Sheed’s not kicking the goal from there anyway, and there’s still two and a bit minutes left’,” he said.

 

“But it all magnifies because he goes back and kicks the goal.”

 

 

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