Donohue in charge of Brentford derby - Referee
Thursday, 26th Nov 2020 09:48 by Clive Whittingham
Matt Donohue, a relative newbie on the Championship list, has been handed QPR's televised trip to Brentford on Friday night.
Referee >>> Matt Donohue (Manchester)
Assistants >>> Mark Russell (Somerset) and Graham Kane
Fourth Official >>> Dean Whitestone (Northants)
Charlton were tits deep in shit themselves. One nil down and it should have been three. That’s not to say they didn’t have chances – Joe Lumley made a good save with his legs to stop Lyle Taylor equalising Cameron’s goal straight from the kick off. But this was a team without a win in ten games and with an injury list that the script writers of the Casualty Christmas Special would baulk at, and initially at least they looked exactly that. Referee Matt Donohue, with all the passive naivety we saw from him at Cardiff earlier this season, allowed a blatant and fragrant attempt to kick Eze out of the game from Darren Pratley continue unchecked for a quarter of an hour under the It’s a Bit Early For A Yellow Card Legislation of 1988 before finally booking the crusty old git for repetitive hacking and dissent. With that nipped in the bud, and Jonathan Leko forced off through injury barely ten minutes in, they looked to be in all sorts of problems.
QPR: Lumley 6; Kane 5, Hall 7, Leistner 7, Manning 6; Cameron 5, Amos 6 (Scowen 78, 6); Pugh 6 (Chair 78, 6), Eze 7, Wells 4 (Osayi-Samuel 66, 8); Hugill 6
Subs not used: Barnes, Wallace, Bouncing Bomb, Smith, Ball
Goals: Cameron 5 (assisted Eze), Pugh 70 (assisted Osayi-Samuel)
Bookings: Manning 53 (unsporting), Amos 55 (foul), Hugill 81 (foul)
Charlton: Phillips 7; Matthews 6, Lockyer 6, Sarr 6, Purrington 3 (Pearce 27, 5); Leko – (Morgan 11, 7), Pratley 6, Gallagher 8, Doughty 7 (Oshilaja 88, -); Bonne 6, Taylor 7
Subs not used: Ledley, Solly, Maynard-Brewer, Dempsey
Goals: Taylor 56 (assisted Morgan), Sarr 90+5 (assisted Phillips)
Bookings: Pratley 17 (dissent), Morgan 53 (unsporting), Matthews 89 (foul)
Referee – Matt Donohue (Manchester) 6 I’ve heard and read loads of grief for this referee so far today but I didn’t come away thinking he’d done anything particularly wrong. He’s new on the Championship list this season, and he’s often quite weak when it comes to dealing with cynical, senior, experienced professionals engaging in the dark arts – we saw that in spades against Cardiff earlier this season and then again here with Darren Pratley hacking his way through Ebere Eze in the opening stages. There was a shout for a late penalty on Hugill, but I didn’t particularly think it was. And five minutes of stoppage time was completely fair – compounded by somebody in Ellerslie Road throwing the ball away causing extra time to be added in which Charlton scored – and was what was added despite the incorrect announcement that there would only be four.
The time wasting in this one started after little more than a quarter of an hour. Every time the ball went out for a throw in, a farcical routine would kick into gear whereby a Cardiff player would set off at walking pace looking for the ball, then having located it set off at walking pace in the other direction to find a towel to dry it with on the first day for three fucking weeks where there’d been no rain, then walk back to roughly where the throw in should be taken, then walk very, very slowly away from that spot down the line, and finally chuck the ball. Every free kick awarded was followed immediately by the ball being nudged ten or 15 yards away from where it needed to be by a player who would then stand on the spot and refuse to move back without a prolonged argument about whether the offence had actually been committed very slightly further back. Goal kicks were taken in the sort of time a half decent artist might be able to complete an oil on canvas of Smithies lining the thing up.
All of this was passively overseen by referee Matt Donohue, in his first season on the Championship list and completely and utterly out of his depth here in dealing with experienced, professional, cynical footballers. He refereed like he was scared to say anything to the players under his charge, twice in the first half playing advantages through bad fouls and failing to return to the offender later for even so much as a word. He happily let Morrison pull that towel trick all night, only very occasionally blowing his whistle for a second time and making a hand gesture that I think was supposed to signal that perhaps a minute and a half is long enough to prepare for a throw in and the ball should probably be back in play by now. He did go and speak to Smithies at one point, delaying the game further, to make it clear that he absolutely wouldn’t stand for very much more of this stuff for very much longer. And then did. Dust the sand out of your vagina and do something about it for goodness sake. Despite it all, the standard two minutes was added to the first half and four to the second. It didn’t matter, QPR would have lost regardless, but two minutes was a bold call given what had gone in that half and four at the end of the second was, frankly, a total fucking shambolic embarrassment that should see him spending some time back down the divisions for a few weeks.
I’ve said this a fair bit, usually after losing to Preston, but QPR are horribly naïve in this sort of situation. Do I want us to go full Ben Pearson on the situation? No. But when the referee is standing there scratching his pubics while Sean Morrison ambles off down the touchline looking for a towel to wipe the ball for a routine throw in on a dry night, it’s not beneath us or unbecoming to get in the referee’s ear and ask what in the name of fuck is going on. On Saturday Jake Livermore spoke to the referee so much in the first half I thought it might be his dealer - asking why every QPR offence wasn’t a yellow card, and downplaying everything West Brom did. We just sort of kick around and let it happen, timid lads in the playground, bullied by the bigger boys.
Cardiff: Smithies 7; Peltier 6, Morrison 7, Flint 7, Bennett 5; Bacuna 5, Pack 6; Whyte 5 (Hoilett 87, -), Tomlin 6 (Paterson 65, 6), Murphy 5; Glatzel 5 (Ward 81, -)
Subs not used: Etheridge, Nelson, Mendez-Laing, Coxe
Goals: Morrison 11 (assisted Flint), Pack 45+1 (assisted Whyte), Paterson 72 (assisted Bacuna)
Bookings: Whyte 87 (foul), Paterson 80 (unsporting)
QPR: Kelly 5; Rangel 5 (Kane 66, 6), Cameron 4, Leistner 5, Manning 6; Ball 5 (Wells 63, 5), Scowen 6; Osayi-Samuel 6, Chair 6 (Pugh 80, -), Eze 7; Hugill 5
Subs not used: Lumley, Wallace, Mlakar, Masterson
Bookings: Manning 80 (unsporting)
Referee – Matt Donohue (Manchester) 4 Out of his depth. Taken for a fool by more experienced players who knew what they were doing. Allowed the game to descend to a pace so slow it was literally stationary for long periods. You could drink eight pints of Carling and produce a piss stronger than this bloke.
Wigan, so comfortable in the first half, were now having a bit of a panic for themselves. Kipre, a human Redwood for the first 45, was starting to sway a bit in the growing storm. A high boot on Ilias Chair – not difficult, to be fair to him – was right on the cusp of the penalty box but drew only a free kick from newbie referee Matt Donohue. Rangers protested, as well they might, they haven’t scored a direct free kick since Yeni Ngbakoto did so at Birmingham City in February 2017 and have spent the early rounds of 2019/20 hopelessly punting one attempt after another into the base of the wall. Not, it should be said, that we’ve been a lot better with penalties recently either. All runs come to an end eventually though and with two QPR men allowed to stand on the end of the Wigan wall (thought there was a new rule about that this season?) Ebere Eze was able to cutely pick his spot to the left of the defenders, and the keeper, but not so far that the ball couldn’t neatly beautifully in the side-netting for 2-1. We have choreographed handshakes now too, just in case any Spurs scouts are in the house.
QPR: Lumley 5; Rangel 5, Hall 6, Barbet 6, Manning 6; Scowen 5 (Leistner, 46 7), Ball 5 (Smith 71, 6); Eze 8, Chair 7, Pugh 7 (Hugill 68, 6); Wells 6
Subs not used: Kane, Osayi-Samuel, Owens, Kelly
Goals: Wells 48 (assisted Rangel, pre-assist Manning), Eze 61 (direct free kick, won Chair), Hugill 81 (assisted Eze)
Bookings: Char 45+2 (diving), Hall 78 (unsporting)
Wigan: Marshall 4; Kipre 6 (Massey 78, 6), Dunkley 5, Fox 5; Byrne 6, Robinson 7; Morsy 5, Evans 5, Jacobs 5 (Naismith 56, 5); Lowe 6 (Lang 59, 5), Garner 5
Subs not used: MacLeod, Mulgrew, Roberts, Jones
Goals: Kipre 2 (assisted Fox)
Bookings: Dunkley 58 (foul), Kipre 65 (foul), Robinson 76 (foul), Garner 78 (unsporting)
Referee – Matt Donohue (Manchester) 7 Lot of bookings, but all justified. Maybe could have done more to stop Joe Garner being Joe Garner before it finally boiled over into a spat with Hall for which both were yellow carded but everything else pretty spot on and game management was fine.
This is only Donohue’s third full season on the Football League list having stepped out of the National League in 2018/19. He booked 135 players (3.64) and sent a further seven off in 37 appointments that season - all of those were in League’s One and Two, and the cup competitions, with the Championship step up only coming in 2019/20.
He booked 112 (3.73) and sent six off in 30 appointments, 21 of those in our division. He showed eight yellow cards on the opening day at Crewe 0-3 Plymouth, and again in our 2-2 draw with Charlton, which were his busiest days. Two of his red cards came in his three appointments with Brentford so far. He sent Bristol City’s Ashley Williams off after just 13 minutes at Ashton Gate leading to a 4-0 Bees win, and also dismissed Wigan’s Joe Garner at Griffin park as the Latics lost 3-0 late in the season. He was also in charge for their 1-0 loss at Blackburn in late November.
So far this season a pretty low 19 yellows and one red in eight games, led by four yellows and a red at Preston 0-1 Stoke.
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