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Penton in charge of QPR v Preston
Penton in charge of QPR v Preston
Thursday, 3rd Apr 2008 15:20

Clive Penton is the man in the middle for QPR's home match with Preston North End on Saturday.

Queens Park Rangers v Preston North End
Referee – Clive Penton (Sussex)

Assistants – Evetts (Hertfordshire) and Hayto (Essex)
Fourth Official – Child (Kent)

It’s been another week of discussing video referees after our controversial let off at Portman Road last weekend. Understandably after dropping valuable promotion points against us as a result of Matt Connolly’s suspect goal line, or behind the line as it actually was, clearance Jason De Vos the Ipswich captain thinks it’s time for cameras on the goal line. I agree with him, I know that means we would have lost last weekend but I don’t see why we should rely on the useless match officials we have to put up with any more than we have to – and goal line technology is available and almost fool proof. It’s time in my opinion to have cameras in the posts for incidents on the goal line.

That of course still wouldn’t eradicate all errors, and Uriah Rennie would still be able to ruin your afternoon whenever he liked whether there were cameras there or not. Watford fans probably thought last Saturday couldn’t get much worse when Hull City went 3-0 up against them – Rennie had other ideas. His decision to show a straight red card to Steve Kabba had me laughing into my cereal when I saw it on Sunday morning and it took the FA all of two days to laugh it off themselves – Kabba won his appeal and in the end there’s no real harm done because that game was over already. How much longer we have to put up with decisions like this from Rennie before he finally gets the push God only knows.

This weekend we have Clive Penton in charge for our home match with Preston North End.

This is Penton’s first QPR appointment of this season but he was at Loftus Road twice last term for two very contrasting games. The first was a dire 1-0 defeat by Coventry before Christmas which you may remember for the visitor’s robust approach to stopping Lee Cook, or more to the point for this column the lack of notice the official paid to that. We were a bit happier with him on his second visit – a thrilling 3-2 win against Luton over the Easter weekend when he awarded the R’s a penalty and we went on to win with a last second header from Paul Furlong – his last goal for the club. He also gave Luton a penalty in that match although, if you recall, that was for Marc Nygaard’s inexplicable diving punched clearance and was about the most blatant penalty you’re ever likely to see.

Referee: C Penton (Sussex) 3 - A shocking display and the worst we've seen in W12 this season. He got the simple things wrong and didn't offer players any protection. In fact he gets most of his points for turning up as he offered nothing when on the pitch. He blew up when advantage would have been more appropriate and his linesmen were a disgrace at times as well. Poor show Mr Penton. LFW Coventry Match Report

Referee: C Penton (Sussex) 5 Failed to book Langley when he spent 20 minutes begging for a card, allowed Luton to engineer a two minute delay before the penalty was taken and missed Talbot's nasty challenge on Camp because he was watching the ball instead of the incident. Luton have also questioned the penalty decision but both spot kicks looked pretty blatant to me. LFW Luton Match Report

A low average of four then, and good enough for joint 26th on the referee league. His last Preston match was their 0-0 draw with Southampton at St Mary’s in February 2006. Two players were booked that day, both from the home side.

So far this season Penton has shown 80 yellows (3.077 a match) and two reds in 26 matches. His most prolific afternoon so far came in a league match between Wycombe and Wrexham in March when he booked six and sent off, you won’t be surprised to hear, Tommy Doherty in the second half. Nine of his matches have been in the Championship during which he has shown 31 yellows and no reds which is slightly above average but not worryingly so in a Rob Styles sort of way.

Last season he showed 105 yellows (3.62 a match) and four reds in 29 matches. Again, nine of those matches came in the Championship and in those he showed 36 yellows and no reds. In fact he hasn’t sent a player off in a Championship match since Derby v Watford in August 2005 when Richard Jackson endured an early bath. He’s refereed 34 Championship matches since then so that bodes well.

Normally at this stage I’d flag up where some of the referees that have wronged us in the past are in action this weekend but a scan of the list reveals slim pickings. Maybe they’re all off having a weekend away together, plotting the downfall of QPR next season no doubt. No sign of Rennie, Kettle, Probert, Styles, Hall or anybody else. Kevin Friend has Northampton v Luton and Jarnail Singh has Bristol Rovers v Hartlepool but that is about it except to say that Steve Bratt, currently propping up the referee league for his abysmal handling of our trip to Plymouth, is the slightly il-advised choice for the Millwall v Gillingham match. During the week Mark Clattenburg has Stoke v Palace on Monday, Steve Bennett is the choice for the Sheffield derby on Tuesday.

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