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'Roll on VAR' - Warnock furious at referee in Cardiff's defeat to Chelsea

17:42 IST 31/03/2019
Neil Warnock Cardiff City Wotford Premier League 2019
The Bluebirds boss didn't hold back after his side saw a number of key refereeing decisions go against them

Cardiff City boss Neil Warnock has lashed out at some of the “criminal” decisions that went against his side during their last-gasp defeat to Chelsea on Sunday.

The Bluebirds looked on course for a valuable victory when Victor Camarasa volleyed them ahead at the start of the second half but then saw three crucial decisions from referee Craig Pawson go against them.

First, skipper Sean Morrison saw his penalty appeals turned down when he looked to have been tugged to the ground by Antonio Rudiger.

Then, with six minutes left, Cezar Azpilicueta nodded home the equaliser despite replays showing the Blues defender was stood in an offside position.

Rudiger was then only shown a yellow card for dragging back Kenneth Zohore when he was through on goal, with the Cardiff players and coaching staff screaming for a red.

To add insult to injury, Chelsea substitute Ruben Loftus-Cheek headed home a dramatic winner in the first minute of stoppage-time.

The defeat means Cardiff remain five points adrift of Burnley, Southampton and Brighton in the final relegation place with seven games to play.

A furious Warnock was heavily critical of the officials after the game and lamented the absence of VAR, which will only be introduced in the Premier League from the start of next season.

"It's difficult because I am really flat. I am so proud of my players. To get let down by the officials... roll on VAR,” he told Sky Sports.

"We worked three weeks for this but to get let down by decisions. No major decisions went for us.

"They don't realise what is at stake. If I was a Burnley or a Brighton fan, they will be absolutely loving it today.

"It's not our fault an official can't see that [Azpilicueta’s goal], it is the most obvious offside I have ever seen or the most certain penalty I have ever seen.

"What goes through my mind? Is it payback time for me over the years?

"It's the best league in the world but the worst officials. They don't understand what is at stake. They shouldn't make mistakes at this level.

"Why am I working at 70 years of age for things like that to happen? It's not very often I am lost for words.

"My players feel like they have been kicked in the teeth. We've been kicked so many times. I don't deserve officials like that today. There is no excuse for that, it's criminal.

"If my players feel like they look in the dressing room, that's the end of our season. But how many times have we bounced back this season?"