McCarthy’s fairytale ending turns to tragedy

MICK McCARTHY is rarely one to mince his words. On Saturday Mark Halsey was on the receiving end of some no-nonsense Yorkshire words of wisdom from the Wolves manager after his side’s 2-1 defeat.

McCarthy accused referee Halsey of getting two big decisions wrong after watching his side slump to a fourth consecutive Barclays Premier League defeat.

Trailing 2-0 in the first half to goals from Demba Ba and Jonas Gutierrez, Halsey first failed to spot a clear foul by Steven Taylor on Jamie O’Hara inside the area.

Instead, Halsey awarded a free-kick just outside, denying Wolves a penalty and a chance of at least going into the dressing room at the interval with a fighting chance of salvaging something.

Then, in the first minute of five added on at the end and minutes after a diving header from Steven Fletcher had set up a grandstand finish, there came another crucial decision.

Halsey relied on one of his assistants to make the call on a left-wing cross from Adam Hammill that was nodded back by Matt Jarvis and turned home by Kevin Doyle.

McCarthy was adamant the ball had not crossed the dead-ball line and that his side were robbed of a point.

“I guess you’d like me to blame them [the official], and I’d probably be justified in doing so,” said McCarthy.

“But we gave two goals away to start with which came right out of the blue.

“But when you’re having a tough time you do rely on people getting decisions right, and quite clearly they got them wrong.

“Mark Halsey said he didn’t want to guess, well I guess he did because he got it wrong. He guessed wrong. He [O’Hara] is a good yard inside the 18-yard box, not just a little bit.

“And when you’ve worked as hard as my lads have at the end of the game to get the equaliser, to have another decision go against you tends to rip the heart out of you a little bit.”

McCarthy found an ally in Newcastle boss Alan Pardew, whose side are now unbeaten in their last 10 league games.

Asked if his side deserved the win, Pardew replied: “I don’t think deserved is the word I’d use today.

“In my view, if you want to use the word deserved, they deserved something from the game themselves.

“We were a little fortunate with that decision at the end. I’ve seen it. It’s really tight.”

As for the penalty, again Pardew backed McCarthy, adding: “I saw the fans’ reaction and I honestly thought it was a penalty. I had already accepted that one.”

Pardew’s words were but a crumb of comfort for an appreciably unhappy McCarthy, who added: “Pards is honest enough.

“Why would he say anything else when he knows different? It would make him look silly, and he’s not that. He’s an intelligent bloke.”

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