Muscat fumes after Melbourne Victory's win
Melbourne Victory A-League coach Kevin Muscat dismissed the refereeing as a joke in a scathing assessment after Victory's 3-0 win over arch rivals Adelaide United.
The Victory led 1-0 at halftime on Saturday night and, despite being a man down in the second half, the home side showed great determination at Etihad Stadium in front of 20,064 fans.
Victory goalkeeper Nathan Coe saved a penalty from the boot of Sergio Cirio in the 67th minute which would have made it 1-1.
Archie Thompson scored a minute later for the Victory and Mitch Nichols added to the Reds' woes in the 76th minute, after a first-half goal from Kosta Barbarouses.
Moments before halftime the match took an explosive turn as Victory defender Adrian Leijer was given his second yellow of the half and red-carded from the field after trying to impede Cirio's run.
Confusion over a Victory substitution followed.
Muscat blasted referee Ben Williams at halftime but was waved away.
Nick Ansell, who was subbed on for James Troisi amid the confusion late in the first half, was yellow-carded for entering the field of play before the sub was made.
Muscat said his players had given a superb effort, but the Victory coach was less enthusiastic about the match officials.
Muscat was blunt over the decision to award a penalty against Pablo Contreras for bringing down Jeronimo Neumann in the box in the 67th minute.
"The referee got that one wrong," Muscat said.
"If we used the word simulation, it would be an understatement."
Muscat defended Contreras, saying: "He didn't give that one away tonight."
The Victory coach was puzzled by Ansell's yellow card.
"What happened to get him on, I have no idea and I don't think anyone does," Muscat said.
"It took an eternity to get him on and then when the fourth official lets him go on ... the ball hasn't even been played and he's booked.
"So shambolic comes to mind immediately. It was a joke."
The Victory's third win of the season snapped a two-game losing streak ahead of Friday's away game against Central Coast Mariners.
Adelaide have one win from the first seven rounds and face another trip to Melbourne next Sunday to play the Heart at AAMI Park.
Coach Josep Gombau says he's making big changes and it will take time.
"For the team and for me, I am not worried because I think we are on the way," he said.
He said the visitors played about 40 minutes of good football: "We had many, many chances to score. We miss a penalty and this penalty changed the game."