Whitestone takes Preston trip - Referee
Thursday, 5th Mar 2020 21:23 by Clive Whittingham
Dean Whitestone gets a third QPR appointment of the season this Saturday as the R’s head to Preston North End.
Referee >>> Dean Whitestone (Northants), first season back at this level since 2015/16.
Assistants >>> Nik Barnard and Mark Dwyer (West Yorkshire)
Fourth Official >>> Steven Copeland (Wirral)
A bit of a “come on you R’s” at the start of the second half carried all the conviction of one of those farts you quietly release into the bed clothes hoping the other half doesn’t notice. The team’s response was similarly unconvincing, and constantly hampered by referee Dean Whitestone’s persistent and ongoing belief that you can play advantage through a foul on the edge of the penalty area if the team that’s been sinned against has retained possession back in their own half. I know we’re not shit hot with direct free kicks Dean, but throw us a fucking bone mate. Eze shot wide, then on the hour clever movement from Hugill at a corner got him free enough to head down into the ground, over the goalkeeper Daniel Bentley and eventually away to safety via a clearance on the line. City’s two centre backs, Nathan Baker looking like the world’s tallest human and Ashley Williams so round I was surprised not to see a moon in orbit around him, stood up big and strong all day. Conor Masterson headed wide of the top corner when I thought he’d scored.
Marc Pugh’s introduction for Luke Amos did nothing for anybody, one horrendous air shot from a presentable chance deep in the penalty area particularly galling, but Jack Clarke’s addition to the fray really enlivened things. Clarke was so appallingly bad against Sheffield Wednesday you could have legitimately registered a charity dedicated to his care and improvement, but here he was an entirely different and far more effective small blond child. On for the last nine minutes, and a disgracefully skinny five minutes of stoppage time given all the shithousery Whitestone had allowed to go on unchecked, he electrified the game, his team and the crowd, cutting in and delivering lethal service to the back post time and time again.
Bentley saved in thoroughly unorthodox fashion from Hugill’s header off an Eze cross. An equaliser was coming, and who knows had Whitestone added the seven, eight or nine minutes the events of the second half warranted we may have got one. The final kick of the game saw Clarke deliver a vicious free kick that provoked another scramble which City were lucky to survive. The final whistle followed, prematurely, immediately.
QPR: Kelly 6; Kane 6, Hall 5, Masterson 6, Wallace 7; Ball 7 (Shodipo 88, -), Amos 5 (Pugh 63, 5); Osayi-Samuel 5, Chair 7 (Clarke 81, 7), Eze 6; Hugill 5
Subs not used: Lumley, Manning, Rangel, Barbet
Bristol City: Bentley 6; Hunt 6 (Pereira 63, 6), Williams 7, Baker 7, Dasilva 8; Smith 7; Eliasson 7, Massengo 6 (Rowe 78, 6), Paterson 6 (Wells 63, 5), Weimann 7; Diedhiou 8
Subs not used: Nagy, O’Dowda, Wollacott, Palmer
Goals: Diedhiou 16 (assisted Hunt)
Referee – Dean Whitestone (Northants) 5 Sigh. Big decisions, the few that there were, correct. Bookings, none, gave the players every chance, letting Lee Wallace and Eliasson battle away gamely without getting over fussy and involved. But the festering epidemic of clockrunning in the Championship, with the referees complicit and at times exacerbating it, was excruciating here in the second half. We had instances where Bristol City free kicks were awarded, and all their players walked away from the ball and just left it there – nothing done. We had play stopped for injuries which were clearly, obviously, players faking it to stop the game. We had an inordinate delay to execute a simple drop ball in neutral territory – just GET. ON .WITH. IT. We had fouls committed in the final third and an advantage waved when QPR had the ball back in their own half – where’s the pissing advantage there? We had a prolonged ceremonial booking of Bristol City’s assistant manager – I bet he was absolutely fucking devastated, oh no, a yellow card, whatever will I do, I must modify my behaviour, another 45 seconds pissed away. And for all of that and more, we had five minutes added to the end of the game. Disgraceful. It’s the same every single week, and for any Bristol City fans looking in who thinks this is a salty QPR fan trying to pin a deserved defeat on a referee it’s absolutely not, I say the same thing when we do it to other teams. In the Championship, as soon as your team goes in front, the clock running begins, blatant and flagrant, and the referees not only do nothing about it, but actually contribute to it. Five minutes of added time, do me a bloody favour.
QPR initially lacked significant intensity to trouble them unduly. The home side had more of the ball, looked the more accomplished side, but never really felt capable of doing much with it. An early cross from Ebere Eze sparked a panic in the School End penalty area and he was soon teeing up Bright Osayi-Samuel for a shot from a narrow angle tipped over the bar. Jordan Hugill lashed one into the away end with Osayi-Samuel crying out for a pass to his right. Later, when the former Blackpool man did get good ball in good field position, referee Dean Whitestone had a penalty appeal to contend with and rightly decided the Town defender had taken the ball for a corner.
Town’s German manager Jan Siewert had seen something he liked. His team emerged for the second half in a noticeably more positive mood, with a formation shift to overload the right side and Elias Kachunga introduced from the bench for Bacuna who’d been lucky not to see red at the end of the first half for a lazy, ugly tackle on Manning as he cleared a ball down the line. Suddenly half the population of Huddersfield was kicking around in the space in front of Barbet, inside Manning and behind Cameron and the influence of Pritchard and Kachunga was keenly felt. It took all of three minutes for this to tell in the form of a goal – Barbet’s hail Mary attempt at salvaging a lost cause after Kachunga had got in behind him led to a penalty and a yellow card. Joe Lumley went the right way, but wasn’t anywhere really close to Karlan Grant’s second goal of the season. Both have come from the spot.
Chair had a shot saved by loaned Liverpool keeper Grabara almost immediately after coming on. Brilliant hold up and lay work from Jordan Hugill won the first of two free kicks belted into the wall by Barbet – we remain without a goal from a direct free kick since Yeni Ngbakoto at Birmingham in February 2017. Eze pulled O’Brien’s pants down midway through the half and after the Huddersfield man had pulled his drawers up and paid to get back in he was booked for hauling the talented youngster back. When he was freed from those shackles, Eze strode onto a gorgeous chop back from Chair but his shot struck a defender before it reached the goal. Those two could be special together. The frustration of a prolonged stoppage in the game for a miniscule tear in the goalkeeper’s shorts, allowed to turn into an impromptu water break by an otherwise pernickety referee, saw Osayi-Samuel cut in from the left and unleash a shot an inch or two wide of the top corner.
QPR: Lumley 6; Rangel 6 (Kane 71, 7), Hall 7, Barbet 7, Manning 6; Cameron 7, Amos 5 (Wells 82, -); Eze 6, Scowen 5 (Chair 55, 7), Osayi-Samuel 6; Hugill 6
Subs not used: Pugh, Ball, Kelly, Leistner
Goals: Hall 82 (assisted Manning)
Yellow cards: Barbet 48 (foul, penalty concession), Osayi-Samuel 90+2 (foul)
Huddersfield: Grabara 6; Hadergjonaj 6, Elphick 6, Schindler 7, Kongolo 6; Bacuna 5 (Kachunga 45, 6), Hogg 6, O’Brien 6, Diakhaby 6 (Quaner 76, 5), Pritchard 6 (Stankovitch 90+5); Grant 7
Subs not used: Bockhorn, Koroma, Brown, Schofield
Goals: Grant 48 (penalty, won Kachunga)
Yellow cards: Diakhaby 2 (diving), Bacuna 43 (foul), O’Brien 69 (foul), Quaner 79 (foul), Grant 90+2 (foul)
Referee – Dean Whitestone (Northants) 6 Big decisions were right, and there were four of them to make – Diakhaby’s dive in the area after two minutes, the challenge on Osayi-Samuel in the other area which Rangers wanted a penalty for, the penalty that was awarded, and the yellow rather than red for Bacuna for the Manning foul. Not easy to call all four correct at normal speed in a pressure situation. Plenty of niggle on the minor stuff though. Went from being one of those officious, by-the-book, absolutely-every-bit-of-physical-contact-is-a-free-kick officials one minute, to letting Geoff Cameron away with a couple of fouls in quick succession that were certainly worth a card when taken cumulatively. Veered between jobsworth and relaxed best mate of the players, often in the same incident – such as the nonsense stoppage of the game for a tiny rip in the goalkeeper’s shorts, followed by a prolonged drinks break in the sun. Despite that, and the goals, and the delay for the penalty, and the full set of substitutions, and an infuriating stoppage so Kachunga could be treated despite him being off the pitch, only five minutes added. How about instead of force feeding technology we don’t need into our sport to check if Raheem Sterling’s arm pit is offside, we make a useful change and take the clock off the referee on the field?
QPR: Ingram 6; Perch 6, Onuoha 6, Hall 7, Bidwell 6; Borysiuk 7 (Luongo 6, (61)), Kakay 7 (Polter 6, (73)), Sandro 8; El Khayati 7 (Chery 7 (40)), Shodipo 7, Washington 7
Subs Not used: Smithies, Grego-Cox, Comley, Paul
Rochdale: Logan 6; Rafferty 6 (Andrew (5, (78)), McGahey 6, Canavan 6, McNulty 6; Lund 7, Allen 7, Cannon 7 (Mendez-Laing (6, (62)), McDermott 7; Henderson 6, Thompson 6 (Davies 6, (63))
Referee - Dean Whitestone 8 Having booked Sandro for talking out of turn, he was consistent in eventually pulling out a yellow card for Lund following a prolonged talking to. Overall, he handled the game well and was largely anonymous throughout - although, in my opinion, he could have done more in clamping down on the niggling trait of the Rochdale forwards in holding on to the ball when it was dead and then dropping it just out of reach. It’s so annoying, very unsporting - and Karl Henry, in particular, is guilty of it a lot. It’s behaviour that could easily be stamped out with a warning at first and a yellow card to finish.
Rotherham complained long and hard to referee Dean Whitestone in the aftermath. The move had begun with a free kick awarded for a nothing foul by Clarke-Harris on Perch in the Rangers half of the field – an incredibly generous decision, one that Rotherham and their walking heart attack on the touchline, with some justification, feel go against them far too often at this level.
Whitestone later let Karl Henry off without a card for a bad foul on Ledesma but Austin was booked for a wild tackle on Grant Ward. The striker seemed to be in a funny mood. His flick round the corner for Luongo in the run up to the second goal was sublime, but afterwards he turned away from the action and stood still while the attack developed. The foul smacked of frustration, like his long range shots in the first half, but his determination to get a goal did bring a third on the hour as he brought a goal kick out of the air brilliantly on his chest, turned Danny Collins and then finished low under Kelle Roos – the keeper on loan from Derby County should have been able to save it blindfolded.
A comfortable win and stroll in the sun had been turned into a nervous farce. Suddenly Rangers were watching the clock. Luckily, Polter took the matter in hand and drove into the penalty area in his own unique style, never once looking like he had the ball under control or knew what he was doing, before hitting the deck under pressure from Lee Frecklington. Rangers had been denied a penalty earlier when Austin was apparently tripped after picking up on Luongo’s flick, but Whitestone pointed to the spot this time. Polter seemed keen to take the kick himself – penalty taking being the German national sport after all – but Austin was having none of it and calmly rolled the ball home to win the match all over again.
QPR: Green 6; Perch 6, Hall 6, Onuoha 6, Konchesky 6; Faurlin 6 (Doughty 77, 6), Henry 5; Luongo 7 (Polter 82, -), Chery 8 (Kpekawa 90+2, -), Phillips 7; Austin 7
Subs not used: Hill, Emmanuel-Thomas, Hoilett, Smithies
Goals: Chery 42 (assisted Perch/Austin), 50 (assisted Luongo), Austin 63 (unassisted), 90 (penalty – won Polter)
Bookings: Austin 61 (foul)
Rotherham: Roos 4; Buxton 6, Halford 6, Collins 5, Newell 6; Frecklington 6, Smallwood 5 (Thorpe 45, 6), Ward 5 (Maguire 78, 5), Ledesma 5 (White 68, 5); Clarke Harris 6, Derbyshire 5
Subs not used: D Ward, Green, Rawson, Collin
Goals: Clarke Harris 72 (assisted Frecklington), Thorpe 87 (assisted Newell/Collins)
Bookings: Buxton 68 (foul), Maguire 78 (foul)
Referee – Dean Whitestone (Northants) 6 Fairly standard Championship refereeing performance. Rotherham were rightly aggrieved at the very generous free kick awarded to QPR before the second goal, and that Karl Henry escaped a booking for a bad foul in the second half. QPR felt they should have had a penalty for a foul on Austin, but I’m inclined to agree with the referee that the defender played the ball.
Sensing there might be something here for his team after all, Charlton boss Chris Powell made a double substitution on the hour replacing Pritchard with young Callum Harriott, and the ineffective Church with French forward Yann Kermorgant who, even allowing for his recent period of inactivity enforced by injury, carried an extra layer of winter blubber that hints at rather too much enthusiasm for his nation’s cheese industry.
Still, despite the extra lumber, he was effective in a niggly way, diving around theatrically – including one incident where he claimed Assou-Ekotto had struck him in the face from a distance even Inspector Gadget would have struggled with and another where Joey Barton was harshly yellow carded - to con referee Dean Whitestone out of a couple of dangerous late free kicks that Rangers saw off easily enough. Immediately after coming on Kermorgant nodded back a deep cross immediately after his introduction that Stephens should have done far more than simply hack over the top.
QPR: Green 6; Simpson 6, Dunne 6, Hill 6, Assou Ekotto 7; Barton 6, O’Neil 6; Phillips 6 (Johnson 77, 6), Jenas 5 (Henry 45, 6), Kranjcar 6 (Wright-Phillips 64, 6); Austin 7
Subs not used: Traore, Onyewu, Young, Murphy
Goals: Austin 40 (unassisted)
Bookings: Barton 85 (foul)
Charlton: Hamer 7; Wilson 6, Wiggins 6 , Morrison 6, Devite 6; Stewart 6 (Sordell 87, -), Jackson 5, Cousins 6, Pritchard 5 (Harriott 58, 6), Stephens 5; Church 5 (Kermorgant 58, 6)
Subs not used: Hughes, Evina, Alnwick, Wood
Bookings: Jackson 90+4 (foul)
Referee – Dean Whitestone (Northants) 8 Certainly not the most fiery, keenly fought London derby you’re ever going to see, but what there was to referee Whitestone did well – remaining in the background while keeping a firm hold on proceedings. Marks off for allowing himself to be conned by Kermorgant twice in the final 20 minutes.
QPR: Ikeme 6, Ramage 5 (Taarabt 77, 5), Stewart 6, Gorkss 7, Hill 6, Buzsaky 7, Faurlin 7, Connolly 7 (Borrowdale 85, -), Cook 7, Simpson 7, German 8 (Vine 90, -)
Subs Not Used: Cerny, Quashie, Balanta, Oastler
Goals: German 25 (assisted Buzsaky), Simpson 76 (assisted Buzsaky
Doncaster: Sullivan 7, O'Connor 6, Hird 5, Ward 5, Chambers 6, Oster 6, Wilson 5 (Roberts 83, -), Stock 7 (Mutch 86, -), Coppinger 6 (Shiels 83, -),Hayter 7, Sharp 6
Subs Not Used: Smith, Guy, Spicer, Dumbuya
Goals: Hayter 51 (assisted Sharp)
Referee: Dean Whitestone (Northamptonshire) 9 Hard to think of a mistake he made all game really. I thought one challenge in the second half, from Stock on Buzsaky, was worthy of a yellow card but otherwise he was almost totally anonymous – staying out of the limelight, allowing the game to flow and keeping his cards in his pocket.
The first booking of the match went the way of former Brentford man Jay Tabb for a poor tackle on Cook. Ward headed wide from a corner with many of the home fans celebrating believing it had gone in but Coventry didn’t have to wait much longer to be rewarded for their impressive start to the match.
Michael Doyle was booked for a deliberate handball that stopped QPR breaking away then five minutes before half time QPR squandered the best chance of the match. Leigertwood knocked a hopeful ball through the middle and when the flag stayed down Ledesma homed into view and ran away from the QPR fans through on goal. The little Agentianian took an age to get the shot away, composing and setting himself with numerous touches, and then rolled a tame effort straight into the arms of Westwood. Credit the keeper for reading his opponent’s intentions but in fairness I’ve read more taxing Topsy and Tim books in my time and this was a poor, poor miss from Ledesma – one that Rangers would pay dearly for.
When he did eventually beat that man Westwood caught the ball easily and then went to throw the ball out quickly only to collapse theatrically under no contact whatsoever from Damion Stewart. The young keeper, somebody I rate very highly, then had the nerve to stay on the ground and ask for treatment following which, wouldn’t you just know it, he leapt back up and took the resulting free kick himself. Time wasting is to be expected but this shameful attempt to get another professional booked is not what we want to see.
Isaac Osbourne did see yellow for a bad foul on Delaney that presented Rangers with another chance to deliver into the area but again it came to nothing and was cleared at the near post. With Parejo, Cook and Ledesma in the team our set pieces really should be of a higher quality than they were on Saturday.
Rangers had a penalty appeal waved away as Rowlands broke down the middle of the park, skipping past two City players in the process, only to be brushed off the ball by Dann just inside the penalty area. It would have been a harsh decision had it been given, and it wouldn’t of mattered at all had Blackstock converted from a yard out when Delaney whipped in a cross to the near post seconds later. As it was Dexter bundled the ball high and wide into the stand – another sitter gone begging. Dowie sent on Agyemang for Blackstock after this, despite Dexter’s poor finishing and lacklustre performance I still would have played Agyemang with him rather than instead of him at this stage with QPR needing a goal and Gorkss, Stewart and Delaney still in the defence with absolutely nothing to do.
Coventry: Westwood 7, Osbourne 7, Ward 8, Dann 8, Fox 8, Tabb 7 (Beuzelin 85, -), Gunnarsson 5, Doyle 5, Morrison 6, Eastwood 6 (Best 76, 5), McKenzie 5 (Mifsud 80, -).
Subs Not Used: Marshall, Hall
Booked: Tabb (foul), Doyle (handball), Ward (foul), Osbourne (foul)
Goals: Ward 15 pen (assisted Tabb)
QPR: Cerny 6, Ramage 5 (Parejo 56, 6), Gorkss 7, Stewart 7, Delaney 6, Mahon 5, Leigertwood 6, Ledesma 6 (Buzsaky 53, 7), Rowlands 8, Cook 7, Blackstock 5 (Agyemang 77, 6)
Subs Not Used: Camp, Hall
Booked: Mahon (foul)
Referee: Dean Whitestone (Northamptonshire) 5 Over fussy in my opinion. Plenty of whistle, not a lot of common sense. Hard to argue with any of the cards but otherwise it was another football match where physical contact seemed to be completely banned – an increasing problem in the game. The players have come to play, put the whistle away for a few minutes and let them play.
But when have QPR ever done anything the easy way? Referee Darren Whitestone allowed Colchester to substitute Teddy Sheringham when he really should have been sent off instead and from then on there was only one team in it. A combination of mistakes from Rehman and Bolder let in Yeates for his second goal against us this season. The U's hit the post when Lee Camp uncharacteristically dropped a cross, and had what looked like a blatant penalty waved away late on when Lisbie was accused of diving.
Just before the substitution Sheringham went over the ball on Bob Malcolm and then appeared to have a second go at the Scot as he laid on the floor. It could easily have been a sending off but when the melee had clamed down referee Whitestone allowed the veteran front man to leave the field in a substitution rather than sending him off. It all looked a bit like a junior football matches where referees allow a team to sub a player rather than send him off and cost him his pocket money. Sheringham, and Colchester, can count themselves lucky because he really couldn't have had many complaints if he had been dismissed for a poor tackle. To make matters worse Damion Stewart was then harshly carded when a simple free kick would have sufficed as punishment.
That came back to haunt Stewart ten minutes later. As if Rangers needed any further problems they were reduced to ten men with eight minutes and stoppage time still to play. Mark Yeates collected possession after a scrappy passage of play just outside the centre circle but before he had a chance to turn and run at the defence Stew Peas came flying in with a rash, two footed ball and all tackle from behind. There's no doubt the Jamaican got a big piece of the ball but it was a dangerous tackle that left both players injured and in the modern game you're always going to be in trouble for tackling like that. Sure enough when he got to his feet Whitestone showed him a second yellow and subsequent red - he'd spend his early shower no doubt reflecting on a soft first yellow.
With the sands of time slipping away Colchester thought they were in for an equaliser when Kevin Lisbie raced in behind the defence onto a Clive Platt flick on. Lisbie ran into the area before collapsing under a challenge from Malcolm and Walton. Whitestone put the whistle in his mouth and blew, it seemed certain he'd given a penalty. He ran towards the spot before giving a prolonged, exaggerated wave of his arm that looked like it was going to turn into a heartbreaking point but in the end was simply the most extravagant extrication of a yellow card from a pocket you're ever likely to see. Lisbie was booked for diving, Rangers lived to fight another day. From where I was sitting it looked like a pen and I think that was the longest three seconds of my life ever.
QPR: Camp 6, Malcolm 6, Stewart 6, Rehman 6, Barker 6, Ainsworth 5, Leigertwood 6 (Walton 83, -), Bolder 6, Buzsaky 8, Blackstock 5 (Nygaard 75, 6), Vine 7
Subs Not Used: Cole, Moore, Balanta
Sent Off: Stewart (two yellows)
Booked: Leigertwood (foul), Stewart (foul) Stewart (tackle from behind)
Goals: Buzsaky 27 (assisted Malcolm), 52 (assisted Blackstock)
Colchester: Gerken 6, Balogh 4, Baldwin 5 (Guy 88, -), Virgo 6, Granville 6, Yeates 7, Jackson 6, Izzet 6 (Guttridge 36, 6), McLeod 6, Sheringham 5 (Lisbie 71, 7), Platt 6
Subs Not Used: Cousins, Duguid
Booked: Balogh (shirt pull), Baldwin (foul), Lisbie (diving) Virgo (fighting)
Goals: Yeates 62 (assisted Platt)
Referee - Dean Whitestone 6 - I actually came away from the game thinking he'd done quite well but as I've reflected during my Sunday in front of the television his mark has dropped by a couple as I've remembered some things that worried me about his performance. Firstly Sheringham should have been sent off in my opinion, secondly Stewart's first yellow was very harsh and thirdly I reckon that was a Colchester penalty at the end. In general play he seemed happy to allow the game to flow and seemed reasonably sensible, but he did get too many key decisions wrong for too high a mark.
Two red cards for Whitestone so far this season in 24 appointments, and they both came in Swansea’s 2-1 win against Middlesbrough. He’s shown 64 yellow cards besides that, topped out by the seven he showed at Loftus Road in August. He’s had three Preston appointments so far – a 3-2 loss at Swansea, 1-0 defeat at Reading and 2-1 home win against Charlton.
Just the three red cards from Whitestone across 38 games last season, and two of those were in his first match of the season as Bury saw off Yeovil at home in League Two. He booked 112 over the course of the season (2.947) and topped out at five yellows and a red at Southend 1 Coventry 2 or six yellows at Peterborough 2 Portsmouth 3 – both in League One.
Pictures – Action Images
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