Warriors FC head coach Alex Weaver has hit out at the standard of refereeing in Singapore after the 2-1 win against Tampines Rovers on Thursday night.
Sukhbir Singh was the referee in charge of the S.League game last night, and had allowed play to go on for seven minutes, three minutes more than what the fourth official had indicated.
Title-chasing Warriors FC were hanging on to their slim lead against 10-man Tampines Rovers in the crucial match up, and they eventually survived a late onslaught to take all three points and heap more pressure on favourites Brunei DPMM.
“I fear for the future of Singapore football regarding the refereeing situation,” Weaver said.
“You guys know me for a couple of years now and I don’t criticise the referee because I believe people make mistakes so I try to lay off.
“But it has gotten to a stage where I’m thinking that while we work hard every single day in training, we analyze ourselves and reflect and we work hard on improving all the time, I just wonder what the referees do.
“It’s not just today; it’s been quite a few games. You can say normally when you lose games it’s a bit of sour grapes, but we won the game tonight, and I’m still furious.
“The performance in this game and other games throughout the season has been nowhere near. Fans in Singapore, lovely passionate supporters, they deserve better. The professionals - the coaches, the players, they deserve better.”
The former Hougang United coach is not the first to find the refereeing standards lacking, but has decided to speak out and risk incurring the Football Association of Singapore’s wrath.
Weaver feels that it’s time for someone to speak up and hopes to see improvements made with regards to the current situation.
“I hope something is done,” Weaver said.
“I would love to know what sort of training process is going to be put in place to improve decision making.
“Because what’s happening now is players are just getting touched and they are falling over because they know they are going to get a freekick, right from the very first whistle.
“We have seen it recently against Tampines, we have seen it against Brunei, we have seen it against Home United and they have thrown themselves all over the places because they know they are going to get free kicks.
“I’ve haven’t said anything about the referees since I’ve been in Singapore and it’s a great time to [do it] because we’ve won and done well. Something has got to be said.”
Photo: Weixiang Lim