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By ESPN Staff

Scotland 1-1 Turkey: Referee duped

Scotland defender Stephen Caldwell branded the Turkish players cheats for fooling English referee Mike Riley into ordering off Stephen Pearson and effectively ending Scotland's hopes of winning the Future Cup.

The Premiership official had already sent off Turkish playmaker Yusuf Simsek for a wild tackle midway through the first half, and reduced both sides to 10 men after 45 minutes when he ordered off Motherwell star Pearson for an innocuous-looking shoulder charge.

That was one of a handful of baffling decisions by the referee, but his job was not helped by some theatrical play acting by the visitors.

Caldwell, who scored a fine headed goal in the 1-1 draw, feared the worst when he saw Riley was chosen to officiate the match - he previously had ordered him off against Everton last season - but admitted the Turks' actions made an already difficult job almost impossible.

'The referee did spoil the game, but I don't want to have a go at him because it is difficult for them sometimes,' said Caldwell.

'He was dragged into the whole atmosphere and shape the game was taking. I felt that their guy's tackle was pretty bad and that Pearo [Stephen Pearson] maybe deserved a booking but his was nothing malicious.

'Mike Riley actually sent me off in the Worthington Cup tie against Everton last season so I thought the worst when I saw he was refereeing this match.

'It is hard for refs and I don't want to sit and criticise because I realise that it is a difficult job, but they sometimes get tricked and conned by players and I think that is what happened.

'A lot of the Turkey players started to do that when they got a man sent off.'

Meanwhile, Caldwell admits he is desperate to get away from St James' Park in order to make sure he is in Scotland manager Berti Vogts' plans for the 2006 World Cup qualifiers.

The Newcastle player knows that unless he gets regular first team football he won't be pushing for a place in the top team when qualifying for the World Cup in Germany starts next September.

The centre-half has been unable to force his way into the Newcastle top team this season and is desperate to get his career back on track after wasting the last few months on the sidelines.

Vogts recently admitted that in the past he has been wrong to select players who are not regular picks for their clubs and hinted that only first team regulars will be selected in future.

Caldwell still believes he can do a job for Newcastle boss Sir Bobby Robson, but wanted to send a message to the veteran manager - either play me or sell me.

Caldwell added: 'Everyone knows it is not happening for me just now at Newcastle and that I want to get a move so I can play football. It is no secret that I have been wanting to leave for the last few months, but I will just have to wait and see what happens in the future.

'Hopefully I can get away soon or maybe the manager could have a change of heart and start to play me - that would be ideal. I want to play for Newcastle and get picked for Scotland, but I won't be able to do that unless I am playing regularly.

'I am tired of watching football every Saturday and I just feel that I am being paid for nothing at the moment. I would love things to happen for me at Newcastle, but it does not look like it is going to so I will have to find someone that wants me.'