Cotterill rues ref justice

Last Updated: Tue, 19 Aug 2014 22:41

Steve Cotterill was adamant his Bristol City team had been denied a third straight League One win against Leyton Orient by a refereeing error.

The hosts had the ball in the back of the net on 37 minutes when Marlon Pack sent an inswinging corner over from the left which beat goalkeeper Adam Legzdins.

But ref Simon Hooper whistled for a foul on Legzdins by Sam Baldock and the game ended goalless.

After viewing the incident on DVD, City boss Cotterill insisted: "We were robbed of two points.

"Sam hasn't touched the keeper. I can't believe that when the referee sees what happened again, as I have, he will find a reason for disallowing the goal. He will have to admit he made a huge mistake.

"We should be talking about a 1-0 win. Instead, the players are disappointed, but I saw a lot of positives to take out of the game.

"We knew Orient would be difficult to break down and that we would need to keep a clean sheet. The players passed the ball well under pressure.

"I am happy with seven points from nine. We go Rochdale on Saturday and that could prove our toughest game so far because they are a good side."

Orient were well worth their point on the balance of play and created the clearer chances. Frank Fielding had to make diving saves to keep out two long-range efforts from Lloyd James in the second half.

City forced a string of late corners and substitute Luke Freeman had a shot deflected over, but in general both defences took the honours.

The best two first-half opportunities fell to Orient substitute Darius Henderson, introduced on 22 minutes for Kevin Lisbie, who suffered a shoulder injury, but on both occasions he shot too close to Fielding.

Visting boss Russell Slade said: "I would happily have taken a point before the game considering that City have made such a good start.

"But when I reflect on the game I feel that we had opportunities to win it and just lacked that killer instinct in the second half to get us all three points.

"At times Bristol found it hard to get the ball off us. We are an improving side and not yet where we want to be.

"I was a long way away from the disallowed goal. We try to pressurise the keeper from that type of situation by putting a player on him and sometimes the referee will give a free-kick for pushing or obstruction.

"Bristol are aggrieved that it wasn't a goal, but it would have been very cruel on use given the balance of play."

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