Referee Ben Williams apologises: I got it wrong

A-League referee Ben Williams has publicly apologised for two penalty calls waved away in Friday night's goalless draw between Western Sydney Wanderers and Adelaide United at Pirtek Stadium.

The Reds had a clear penalty shout on 19 minutes when Michael Marrone was up-ended in the box by Wanderers skipper Nikolai Topor-Stanley.

Wanderers striker, Mark Bridge was also frustrated in first-half injury time when he was brought down in the box but was not awarded a penalty.

Williams went on Fox Sports post-match to explain his decisions and admit he got it wrong.

"With the first challenge the way I saw it from my position with the Topor-Stanley challenge was that Topor Stanley held his position and the attacker had instigated the contact," Williams said.

"And I felt it was kind of normal contact – not simulation and not a penalty – hence the no call.

"Having seen the contact now I think that’s a penalty – so my apologies there.

"And in regards to the other one with the Michael Bridge challenge again, from my position, I saw the defender take the ball but I couldn’t see the other back leg, and the other back leg is probably the one that takes Bridge. And that’s probably a penalty also.

"Of course we never like to make errors but this is the way it goes and fro my position that’s what I saw on the day. Obviously I’ll go back on the training park and work on that for next match."

Afterwards Fox Sports pundit, Mark Bosnich, applauded Williams for coming on camera after the match.

"Fair play – I want to say well done Ben Williams, because we’ve been asking for this for years and years and years during the A-League," Bosnich said.

"And you know what? It really does take a lot of the air out of the balloon so to speak…because to leave people hanging and saying, 'what’s he thinking?’ To see the man turn around and say, look I’ve had the benefit, as well all did, of the replays – admit his mistake – well done. Because everybody does make mistakes.

"Like I said at half time, it’s not ideal but the positive thing here you can say it was one for each side."

Williams was not asked about the other big talking point of the night - a disallowed goal by Federico Piovaccari on 17 minutes for holding off his defender.