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Robinson back for Derby visit - Referee
Friday, 22nd Jan 2021 07:54 by Clive Whittingham

Tim Robinson, who refereed our opening day win against Forest and subsequent loss up at Blackburn, is in the middle again on Saturday as Rangers host Derby.

Referee >>> Tim Robinson (West Sussex), a third QPR appointment of the season already.

Assistants >>> Nigel Lugg (Surrey) and Adrian Waters (Herts)

Fourth Official >>> Steve Martin (Beverly Hills), came to public notice in the 1960s as a writer for The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour, and later as a frequent host on Saturday Night Live.


Blackburn 3 QPR 1, Saturday November 7, 2020, Championship

But a pattern of play flowing incessantly the other way was quickly set, with the home team able to get Brereton and Armstrong in behind Todd Kane and Rob Dickie down their left and our right at will. Kane could do nothing but haul Armstrong to the ground for an obvious yellow from referee Tim Robinson on eight minutes, and Dickie wasn’t far behind him into the notepad with a similar foul on 21. After dominating Derby’s forwards so comprehensively in the week, here Dickie’s lack of pace was rather exposed, and as we’re coming to learn when that happens so the panicked, handsy, grabbing of opponents begins. He was fortunate Robinson played advantage through another similar foul which surely would have seen him sent off, and I suspect he would like to have pulled Armstrong down again prior to what turned out to be the second goal but learnt his lesson from Oakwell and took the score on the chin without adding a sending off.

Willock, in particular, looked great. He finally got Nyambe going back towards his own goal rather than piling forward towards ours, twisting and turning the full back inside and out, and immediately helping to craft a crossing opportunity for Chair and a chance at the back post for Kane which he hit the base of the post with. I felt he should have scored. Yoann Barbet certainly would have done on 54 minutes when a really slick, clearly pre-planned, four-pass corner routine got him free for a first time shot from 15 yards out which cannoned into a Blackburn player and out for a… goal kick. Just have a guess Tim, it’s not important. The Blackburn lad staggering around clutching the patch where the ball hit him might be a clue but that’s easy for me to say from up here.

This spell of pressure and corners produced an equaliser on the hour when Dykes and Barbet were both fairly obviously pulled away from the ball at the back post and keeper Kaminski then cleared Dickie out through his knees as it dropped to him from a set piece. Perm any penalty from three, Robinson picked the one he liked best, and Dykes dispatched a thunderbastard in his now trademark style. I swear the goalkeepers actually don’t want to save those. If someone happened to get in the way by accident it would probably kill him. Ah, sorry lads, went the wrong way there, well you’ve got to have a guess haven’t you, never mind.

Along similar lines, Blackburn immediately reverted to clock running, as every club in this league does once they’re a goal up. Every time the ball went out of play, it was chipped over the advertising hoardings into the stand, because of course the Covid lives in there and the ball now has coronavirus, and cannot be used until it’s been dipped in a bucket of unicorn tears, less the poor bastard taking the throw in explode into a thousand pieces just for looking at it. Would you like a graph? Love a graph.

Every time QPR had a free kick, the ball was nudged off the spot, or in one egregious example when Chair was trying to take a quick one in a dangerous area, picked up and carried away by Ben Brereton. If there are Rovers fans looking in thinking these are the bitter, tired excuses of a beaten team then allow both regular readers to set you straight. This has been a pet peeve for a while. Every team in the Championship seems to exist purely to get a goal up, and then start wasting time. Every referee in the division does fuck all about it – occasional point at the watch, occasional get on with it gesture with the hands, but never a yellow card, and always the standard 1-2 minutes at the end of the first half, 4-5 at the end of the second. A referee at this level who we have rather a lot told a friend of mine after one of our games last year “their keeper was even pissing me off with it by the end, but QPR didn’t say anything so I just let it go”. It’s such a chronic issue, and such an easy fix, for a sport that’s currently destroying itself as a spectacle spending interminable amounts of time and money judging whether Patrick Bamford’s armpit hair is offside, to remedy a problem that only really existed in the mind of professional idiots like Chris Kamara in the first place.

Blackburn: Kaminski 6; Nyambe 6, Lenihan 6, Wharton 6, Rankin-Costello 7; Evans – (Buckley 5, 6), Johnson 6, Rothwell 7; Elliott 7 (Dolan 90+3, -), Brereton 7 (Gallagher 82, -); Armstrong 8

Subs not used: Davenport, Trybull, Grayson, Eastham

Goals: Brereton 50 (assisted Lenihan), Armstrong 73 (assisted Brereton), 90+5 (assisted Johnson)

Bookings: Johnson 64 (shithousing)

QPR: Dieng 8; Kane 5, Dickie 5, Barbet 6, Hämäläinen 5; Ball 5 (Kakay 46, 6), Cameron 6; Adomah 5 (Willock 46, 7), Carroll 5, Chair 5; Dykes 5 (Bonne 67, 6)

Subs not used: Wallace, Masterson, Bettache, Kelly

Goals: Dykes 61 (penalty, won Dickie)

Bookings: Kane 8 (foul), Dickie 21 (foul), Bonne 90+3 (foul)

Tim Robinson (Sussex) 6 Fine, big decisions correct, penalty bang on, bookings no arguments, possibly quite generous with Dickie on another occasion, but if you can’t be arsed to police clock running this clear and obvious then I can’t be arsed to give you more than a six.

QPR 2 Forest 0, Saturday September 12, 2020, Championship

A cakewalk then? Well, yes, but not baked to the doom mongers’ recipe. QPR were bright, clever and creative. They repeatedly manipulated the ball in behind Forest’s exposed right back Jordan Lawrence-Gabriel and should have scored at least once by doing so – just before the half hour Dykes not quite arriving in time to sweep home Lee Wallace’s centre at the end of a flowing move. They posed threat from inventive set pieces, finding the net through home debutant Rob Dickie after nine minutes only for the goal to be ruled out for a foul in the build up. Referee Tim Robinson satisfying his fetish for defensive free kicks at attacking set plays – it’s all the same, only the names have changed. In the second half Yoann Barbet headed into the side netting from a tight but presentable angle after being worked free at the back post from a free kick, while Dykes hooked a volley over with his unfavoured foot after a cute chip over a defensive wall by Ilias Chair.

The first question was would it be enough for a win? QPR are not adverse to turning promising performances into disappointing results via the medium of missed chances, and when it got to half time at 0-0 you feared for them a little bit. Could they be as good again? Could Forest be as poor? Yes and yes. Joe Lumley’s superb pass out to the left flank after the break was met powerfully in the air by Wallace and that was enough to get Dykes in the wrong side of Figueiredo who clumsily brought him down for an obvious penalty. Bright Osayi-Samuel and Ilias Chair appeared to be playing rock, paper, scissors on the pitch for the right to replace Eze as penalty taker in chief but Dykes, with two successful conversions from the spot in Livingston colours already this season and a first international goal for Scotland during the weeks buoying his confidence, took the responsibility on himself and Julian Dicksed it into the roof of the net harder than a football has ever been kicked before. Wallop. A penalty with chest hair. Had keeper Brice Samba been able to get anywhere near the thing I’m not sure he’d have wanted to. He'd have been killed to death. Just rewards for Rangers, and Dykes, for their respective displays.
QPR: Lumley 6; Kakay 7, Dickie 7, Barbet 7, Wallace 7; Cameron 6, Carroll 7 (Thomas 75, 7); Osayi-Samuel 6 (Smyth 90+3, -), Amos 7 (Ball 84, -), Chair 7; Dykes 7

Subs not used: Kane, Oteh, Masterson, Kelly

Goals: Dykes 54 (penalty, won Dykes), Chair 90+4 (assisted Ball)

Bookings: Dykes 77 (foul)

Forest: Samba 5; Lawrence-Gabriel 5, Figueiredo 4, Worrall 5, Blackett 5; Yates 6, Colback 6; Lolley 5 (Ameobi 59, 6), Freeman 5 (Mighten 73, 5), da Costa 5 (Taylor 73, 5); Grabban 4

Subs not used: Smith, Jenkinson, Dawson, Johnson

Bookings: Figueiredo 53 (penalty concession), Lawrence-Gabriel 62 (foul)

Referee - Tim Robinson (West Sussex) 7 Robinson has something of a fetish for awarding free kicks to the defensive team at set pieces, often for very minimal physical contact by attackers. When the Rob Dickie goal was disallowed earlier, and with Lyndon Dykes about as physical as forwards get at this level, it felt like it was going to be a long afternoon. But that didn’t transpire, he refereed the game well, and the penalty decision was correct.

Charlton 1 QPR 0, Saturday June 27, 2020, Championship

What followed by way of pursuit of an equaliser was a mix of the bad, mad, sad and utterly perplexing. Rangers did get the ball in the net at the other immediately to be fair to them but Ilias Chair’s effort was ruled out for a very generous free kick decision against Bright Osayi-Samuel in the build up. Despite referee Tim Robinson’s decision, that actually boded well for the rest of the game. Osayi-Samuel had tormented Charlton at Loftus Road in December, setting up a memorable goal for Marc Pugh with a mazy run around a clutch of defenders. Chair also looked much more lively than he had seven days ago, winning an early free kick in a dangerous area from Tom Lockyer through pugnacious hard work that caught the centre half trying to shepherd a ball out for a goal kick – that one of three first half incidents that really should have wrought yellow cards from Robinson but only received a warning. Ebere Eze had also curled an early sighter wide of the post with the score still at nil nil. So maybe a groove had been found despite the early Pratley set back.

Hemed was, however, unfortunate not to get a free kick on the edge of the area when Conor Masterson body-checked him out of the way on 17 minutes after another Barbet give away (I hope it was a good cause). When the Frenchman then got drawn out high up the field he deliberately tripped Macauley Bonne to get himself out of the deep water he’d landed himself in – like Lockyer before him, escaping the referee’s notebook only through the official’s extreme leniency. Pratley became the third man in that club on the half hour, cynically interrupting a QPR counter with a deliberate trip – again, just a word on the run.

On the rare occasions the Addicks stopped sitting in and broke down field, they looked far more likely to score than QPR did. Bonne actually found the net with a header from an Aiden McGeady cross on 57 minutes but he’d strayed offside when he had no need to. Pratley headed another corner wide – referee Robinson somehow contriving to award another corner for it rather than a goal kick – and only a great Conor Masterson stretched clearance on 73 prevented a walk-in second. They very steadily made a string of their own substitutions to disrupt QPR’s attempts to inject tempo into the game, though the ever-durable Jonny Williams remained unused having only just recovered from a cut finger which ruled him out of a Fifa version of this fixture against Ebere Eze during the lockdown. If he makes it through to the end of the season without coming to a mischief on the concrete stairs Charlton must now ascend and descend twice a match to reach their new changing facilities I’ll be amazed.

Charlton: Phillips 6; Matthews 7, Lockyer 6, Pearce 6, Oshilaja 7 (Purrington 77, 6); McGeady 6 (Doughty 60, 6), Pratley 7, Cullen 6, Morgan 6 (Green 84, -); Bonne 6 (Field 84, -), Hemed 5 (Aneke 60, 6)

Subs not used: Williams, Amos, Sarr, Davison

Goals: Pratley 12 (assisted Cullen)

Bookings: Pratley 76 (foul)

QPR: Kelly 5; Rangel 5 (Kane 71, 4), Masterson 6, Barbet 4, Manning 5; Cameron 5 (Amos 71, 5), Ball 5 (Bettache 77, 6); Osayi-Samuel 4 (Oteh 71, 5), Chair 6 (Shodipo 60, 6), Eze 5; Hugill 4

Subs not used: Lumley, Kakay, Gubbins, Clarke

Referee – Tim Robinson (West Sussex) 5 As rusty as most of the players, which I guess is understandable – no reason the referees should be back up to match sharpness any quicker than the footballers themselves I guess. Lockyer, Pratley and Barbet should all surely have been yellow carded for first half fouls, an indication perhaps why one of the division’s traditionally more pedantic and picky referees has gone from 3.7 yellows a game last season to 3.03 this and just one red card in 27 outings.

QPR 1 Blackburn 2, Friday April 19, 2019, Championship

You need look no further than the two goals that settled the game to tell you everything you needed to know about it. The first came after 20 minutes when Lewis Travis turned back on himself in the QPR area and Josh Scowen took his legs from under him for the most blatant penalty I’ve seen since Scowen did exactly the same to Ben Brereton in exactly the same part of the pitch to cost us the corresponding fixture up at Ewood Park. Scowen’s been much better recently, man of the match in three of the last five games, but what’s he doing there? Hanging a lazy leg out like that, what exactly does he expect? He’s going nowhere, let him go, wave him on his way, wish him well. Don’t do that. To do it once in the away game you can perhaps excuse, to do it twice… words fail me. It just typified the carefree, careless attitude and approach of the team to this match.

Danny Graham took the spot kick and just as he did at Brentford recently Joe Lumley went the right way, got a thick hand on the ball, and still didn’t save it. He really should have done. Earlier Lumley had been fortunate with a low shot from Corry Evans that should have been routinely saved but squirmed out of his grasp and rolled just wide of the post. He was well beaten by headers from Lenihan right to left and Graham left to right in the first half but both squeaked wide of the post. He looked nervous. Still a long way to go and much improvement needed from him, whatever his hyperactive agent might think. A little more head down and hard work and a little less eyelash fluttering at the rest of the Championship wouldn’t go amiss.

There were other incidents as well. Bright Osayi-Samuel was given a start and posed QPR’s biggest attacking threat, as he has done for weeks. He forced a couple of early corners with strong wing play, Tomer Hemed went reasonably close with a header from one of them. Then after decent hold up play from the Israeli international the former Blackpool winger curled one wide of the top corner. He turned down a shooting chance ten minutes before half time to set up Scowen instead and his shot went straight at Leutwiler in the Blackburn goal. This good approach play then a poor finish is becoming a bit of a theme with him, and happened again in the second half when he beat his man, advanced into the area, then dragged a cross shot well wide.. But of more concern was his behaviour on 80 minutes when referee Tim Robinson waved away a trip on him that probably was a free kick and he responded by charging across and belting Elliott Bennett up in the air with a challenge that was, for me, a red card. He was let off with a yellow but this is not a team with a “spot on attitude” it’s just not.

I’m going to mention Nahki Wells too here. He hasn’t had the fitness problems of Rangel and Cameron, nor has he phoned his performances in like Hemed, and so despite a clear loss of form and confidence in the second half of the season I’ve been prepared to give benefit of doubt more often than not to this particular loan. Here though, on as a second half sub, I thought he stank the place up. Twenty minutes left, 2-0 down at home, Blackburn free kick on halfway, he walked past the ball and let it sit in the Rovers’ half for a minute with nobody in a great rush to fetch it. Poor refereeing for not only allowing Blackburn to do that, but facilitating it by having a prolonged chat with a few of their players about something of nothing, but still from a QPR point of view – go and get the fucking ball man it’s our time. He did, eventually. Twelve minutes from time, an outlandish backhealed cross from Manning found him in acres of space and all the time he needed at the back post but he decided to try a nonsense first time volley that flew high over the bar and wasted Rangers’ best chance of the half. Again, just so half-arsed and careless of us – agh may as well have a bit of a swing at it, doesn’t matter anyway. Well, it matters to us mate. Four minutes into six added at the end of the game, a ridiculous tackle and yellow card over by Ellerslie Road, allowing Blackburn to run the remainder of the time away.

The injury to Cousins meant an extended period of stoppage time, though probably not as extended as it could have been. Referee Robinson seemed to rather go to pieces after his error over the Osayi-Samuel incident and had an infuriating end to the game where he suddenly started getting all pedantic over the placement of free kicks, while turning a blind eye to some absolutely shameless time wasting from the visitors. Having allowed it to go on for most of the half, and added no time for it, Robinson then decided to book the Blackburn goalkeeper in the ninety sixth minute before literally the final kick of the match.

Deep breath. I say again, I’m a patient man, but can anybody explain to me exactly what the fucking point of that is? There are three games left of the season and you need 15 yellow cards for a ban. Leutwiler has none, this was his first (weirdly his only two appearances this season have been home and away against QPR). You do nothing about the time wasting all half, then decide to show the fucking goalkeeper a meaningless yellow literally immediately before full time. I know I’ve been swearing a lot lately and I’m sorry but fuck me sideways, how fucking stupid do you have to be? If ever there was an example of a referee with no feel for the sport he’s been placed in charge of then that was it. I feel like I’m spending my weekends and all of my money just watching a bunch of meatheads do their jobs really, really, really badly. It’s like the first 40 minutes of every episode of Kitchen Nightmares. It’s all Shawshank and no redemption.

QPR: Lumley 5; Wszolek 5 (Eze 74, 5), Furlong 5, Lynch 4, Manning 5; Luongo 5, Scowen 5, Cousins 5 (Wells 52, 4); Osayi-Samuel 6, Hemed 5 (Smith 64, 6), Freeman 5

Subs not used: Ingram, Cameron, Walker, Tilt

Goals: Smith (assisted Freeman)

Bookings; Luongo 59 (foul), Osayi-Samuel 83 (being a dick), Wells 90+3 (being a dick)

Blackburn: Leutwiler 6; Bennett 7, Lenihan 7, Williams 7, Bell 7; Armstrong 8 (Brereton 86, -), Evans 6 (Rodwell 65, 6), Travis 7, Rothwell 6; Dack 7, Graham 7 (Nuttall 68, 6)

Subs not used: Raya, Nyambe, Smallwood, Mulgrew

Goals: Graham 20 (penalty, won Travis), Dack 46 (assisted Armstrong)

Bookings; Rodwell 83 (foul), Leutwiler 90+7 (time wasting, joke)

Referee – Tim Robinson (Sussex) 5 Absolutely fine for an hour or so, albeit (as so often at the moment) in a non competitive game. Then got a bit weird. Prolonged discussions with players about nothing very much at all, huge gaping stoppages in play when they didn’t need to exist, free kicks awarded when advantage could have been played and then further faffing about over the placement of said free kicks. Very generous to Bright Osayi-Samuel, and the late yellow card for Blackburn time wasting was, as said, a complete nonsense.

Blackpool 2 QPR 0, Tuesday September 25, 2018, League Cup Third Round

The only thing we were good at was fouling and getting booked. Scowen was the chief culprit here, but did manage to avoid a booking until his third offence. By his fourth, inside the first 20 minutes, there was a problem. He should’ve been sent off and much to the fury of the Blackpool management and fans referee Tim Robinson let him off and he was quickly substituted before he did commit inevitable offence number five and receive a red card. Scowen himself was deeply miffed at being withdrawn, refusing to shake hands with his replacement Goss, and then booted a water bottle before disappearing down the tunnel. And he was one of the senior players in the team.

Scowen’s removal left the hapless Cousins in charge of the midfield alongside the hopeless Goss and Blackpool, led ably by Jay Spearing, never looked back. They quickly took the lead from a corner which Ingram only half cleared with a weak punch. It was headed back into the danger zone, where Gnanduillet hooked skilfully home. Ingram had already made two smart saves by this point and it’s a shame that this mistake led to the goal as he alone could remotely hold his head up by the end of the game. That said his kicking is still very iffy. Chair was booked for petulance, Cousins and Kakay were booked for fouls as the half petered away along with QPR’s discipline.

Well the linesman gave a throw-in to Blackpool when it was clearly to us, he then dropped his flag. Cousins was rightly sent off, losing the plot and earning a second yellow for a pathetic case of handbags after a nothing challenge on halfway that came after he and Goss had left a ball to each other and lost possession. Perhaps he too was tired of his own ineptitude and just wanted to leave the field.

Blackpool: Howard N/A; Nottingham 8, Henegan 7, Tilt 6, Bola 7; Spearing 8, Guy 6 (Turton 77, -), McLaughlin 7 (O Sullivan 85, -) Thompson 6; Dodoo 6, Gnanduillet 8 (Delfouneso 83, -)

Subs not used: O’Connor, Cullen, Feeney, Mafoumbi.

Bookings: Tilt 56 (foul)

QPR: Ingram 5; Kakay 4, Hall 4, Baptiste 4, Hamalainen 3; Osayi-Samuel 4 (Oteh 77, 3), Scowen 2 (Goss 25, 3), Cousins 2, Wszolek 3; Chair 3 (Smyth 46, 3); Smith 3

Subs not used: Owens, Dalling, Brzozowski, Omar

Red Cards: Cousins 70 (two bookings)

Bookings: Scowen 20 (repetitive fouling), Kakay 22 (foul), Chair 34 (tantrum), Cousins 39 (foul), Cousins 70 (rank stupidity)

Referee: Tim Robinson 7 Can be pedantic but no issues here despite a flurry of cards for QPR players. Every card looked justified and was a bit lenient with Scowen. Blackpool didn’t need to waste time as they knew we were no danger.

Aston Villa 1 QPR 3, Tuesday March 18, 2018, Championship

Villa: Johnstone 5; El Mohamady 5, Terry 4, Chester 6, Taylor 5 (Davis 56, 5); Jedinak 4, Hourihane 5 (Bjarnison 81, -); Adomah 6, Grealish 6, Snodgrass 4; Grabban 5 (Hogan 67, 5)

Subs not used: Lansbury, Bree, Onomah, Bunn

Goals: Chester 90+1 (assisted Snodgrass)

Bookings: Grealish 90+2 (fighting)

QPR: Smithies 8; Furlong 8, Onuoha 7, Lynch 7, Bidwell 8; Wszolek 7 (Perch 72, 6), Scowen 8, Luongo 7, Manning 8 (Cousins 74, 6); Eze 8 (Freeman 79, 7); Smith 7

Subs not used: Washington, Baptiste, Ingram, Osayi-Samuel

Goals: Manning 12 (assisted Bidwell), Bidwell 33 (assisted Wszolek), Freeman 82 (assisted Furlong)

Bookings: Lynch 59 (foul), Bidwell 90+2 (foul)

Referee – Tim Robinson 8 Dodgy old linesman on our side struggled to keep up with play and came up with some random ones as a result but Robinson, who’s usually a right pedantic arsehole and awarded four penalties at Hull v Norwich at the weekend, was very good here, albeit in a one-sided game.

QPR 2 Cardiff 1, Monday January 1, 2018, Championship

By half time you’d rather have been anywhere else in the world (apart from South Bermondsey) and the start of the second half only deepened the depression. The sides had traded half chances – Jordan Cousins, looking decent down the right until given a sight of the goal, miscontrolled a chance from close range; then Onuoha produced a vital block in his own six-yard box to steer a goalbound Zohore shot round the post. But in truth it felt like a game heading for a 0-0 draw until referee Tim Robinson intervened.
Seven minutes after half time, cross to the back post, Bidwell turns to follow it, Paterson collapses to the ground, penalty given. Total bollocks. Insufferable bullshit.

It reminded me of a spot kick given in almost exactly the same spot many years ago by David Ellery against Karl Ready when we were playing Spurs. That night a deep cross was sailing well past the goalmouth and out to the far side and as Ready turned to follow it out there Teddy Sheringham embarrassingly threw himself over the back of the defender. Ellery obliged, Spurs scored, Rangers from 2-0 up lost 3-2. This, too, from Paterson, was a flagrant dive. Cheating. A man whose frame suggests he didn’t so much indulge in too much Christmas shortbread as buy a metric ton of the stuff and try to eat himself to death, apparently absolutely poleaxed and sent crashing to earth by the most minimal of contact from Bidwell. A load of rubbish from a crap referee, who’d already waved away a more convincing penalty appeal by the visitors in the eleventh minute and later said no to an actual push by Alex Baptiste that prevented a goal and was an absolute stone waller. Robinson marrying the usual pedantry, pickiness and endless terminal discussions with players about nothing very much at all that we’ve come to expect from him with rank incompetence throughout this match.

Joe Ralls, Cardiff’s best player, converted. Maybe we shouldn’t have made such a big deal of Alex Smithies’ penalty exploits a year ago – he hasn’t got near any of the last five he’s faced now.

Shortly after that Cardiff were forced to remove Lee Peltier because of injury. The former Huddersfield full back’s odyssey from the centre circle to the touchline included a handshake with the referee, and two of his team mates, and a wave to the crowd, and the swapping of the captain’s arm band. At one stage I thought he was going to embark on a full lap of honour and sign autographs, which rather suggested Cardiff were going to try and snap their losing streak by grinding this one out. You couldn’t blame them for that but if it had continued for any length of time, with confidence already low among the QPR players, the atmosphere non-existent, an absolute joystick refereeing and goals hard to come by then it’s pretty easy to imagine that frustration would have festered and another game would have drifted away.

Luckily Rangers equalised very quickly, although even Matt Smith’s highly basic leveller - heading straight in from one of Robinson’s long throws - did little to stir anything much more than apathy. How a Cardiff side with Bruno Manga, Sol Bamba, Matt Connolly, shortbread enthusiast Paterson and Kenneth Zohore in it lost a header all afternoon, never mind conceded a goal from one, is beyond me but there it was, credit to Smith for a good finish and Robinson for a monster throw in. One one, the first a dreadful bit of refereeing, the second Championship 1.1.

To be fair, as the teams emerged it looked even more ridiculous. Smyth, weighing about six stone, looked like a pale little boy on his first day at the big school, ripe for Bamba, Manga and Connolly the playground bullies. A more physically imposing and experienced Championship back three you’d struggle to find anywhere in the division this season. Bamba looks like a man who left the coathanger in his shirt, Smyth looked like something he might have for his elevenses. But it says much for Smyth’s spiky approach to the task, and the quality of the refereeing, that the debutant was repeatedly warned for niggling, annoying, needling and bullying the world’s biggest human being. Fearless little git as it turns out, all done with a happy expression of angelic innocence.

And there was the equaliser that wasn’t too. Hoilett would have loved nothing more than his eighty-third-minute shot under Smithies and into the net to have counted, but a late linesman flag, and Smithies tapping him on his shoulder, interrupted a dance under the jubilant away fans. Referee Tim Robinson came across and spoke with his assistant for what seemed like an age about whether the ball had actually been played into Hoilett’s path by Josh Scowen, which it had, although Scowen had pretty obviously been fouled anyway. So it was either a goal, or a QPR free kick on the edge of the area. In keeping with everything else he’d done since 15.00, the referee got it wrong, and disallowed it for offside after all. Neil Warnock fumed so hard he crashed into the dugout on his way off at full time while haranguing the officials.

QPR: Smithies 7; Baptiste 8, Onuoha 6, Robinson 7; Cousins 7, Bidwell 6 (Lynch 84, -); Scowen 6, Luongo 6, Freeman 7; Smyth 8 (Oteh 77, 7), Smith 6

Subs not used: Wszolek, Lumley, Chair, Oseyi-Samuel, Sylla

Goals: Smith 62 (assisted Robinson), Smyth 72 (assisted Smith)

Yellows: Smyth 70 (repetitive fouling), Freeman 90+3 (foul)

Cardiff: Murphy 5; Manga 6, Bamba 6, Connolly 5; Peltier 6 (Damour 58, 6), Paterson 6, Ralls 7, Bennett 6; Healey 6 (Mendez-Laing 67, 6), Hoilett 7, Zohore 6

Subs not used: Richards, Tomlin, Pilkington, Halford, Etheridge

Goals: Ralls 54 (penalty – won Paterson)

Yellows: Connolly 18 (foul), Peltier 50 (foul)

Referee – Tim Robinson (West Sussex) 3 Not a referee I’ve ever particularly got on with – the pedantry, the long drawn out conversations with players, the fetish for awarding free kicks to the defending team under every set piece, the heavy card count and more besides all contribute to bitty, stop-start, niggly games which are dreadful to watch and seemingly very frustrating to play in. There was all of that here, as usual, but this time he married it up with a series of dreadful calls with the big decision. The Cardiff penalty is a joke, an obvious dive under minimal contact, a clear and successful attempt to con the officials. Worse still, later in the game with QPR hanging on Alex Baptiste did actually shove his man in the area just as he looked set to make it 2-2 from close range and nothing was given. The Cardiff disallowed goal could have been waved off for a foul on Scowen, but not for offside (which is what they eventually gave) as it was Scowen that played the ball. Just about the only thing he did get right all afternoon was the late offside free kick which Cardiff took in the QPR half to much protest from the South Africa Road stand – new rule this year kids, if you retreat from an offside position the free kick is taken from where you touch the ball not where you start. Overall, bit of a catastrophe.

Nottingham Forest 4 QPR 0, Saturday November 4, 2017, Championship

Furlong on, Scowen dropping deeper, is a change that could have been made as early as the twentieth minute, when the score was only 1-0 but it was clear Rangers were starting to have a problem. Ian Holloway, a manager of huge experience and with several promotions on his CV, would tell me, some nobody who works in an office, I don’t know what I’m talking about but by the time changes were made, at half time, it was already 2-0. And when they did come, they were like-for-like swaps – Matt Smith, who isn’t as mobile or as big a goal threat as Idrissa Sylla, came on for the Guinean, and Jamie Mackie, who doesn’t have the craft or goal threat of David Wheeler, replaced the former Exeter man. Smith should have had a penalty when the shirt was lifted clean off his back just before the hour, referee Tim Robinson wasn’t interested despite the bare torso offering an obvious clue, and Mackie should have made it 2-1 with a diving header from close range straight after coming on. But the substitutions didn’t address the problems Forest were causing the system and consequently they continued to tear QPR apart all the way through the second half. Sneaking Yeni Ngbakoto on for Luke Freeman later in the day, again, added nothing to Rangers going forwards and didn’t solve any of their problems defensively.

Forest: Smith 6; Lichaj 6, Worrall 6, Mancienne 7, Traore 6; Bridcutt 7, Osborn 8; Walker 8, Dowell 9 (Bouchalakis 77, 6), McKay 8 (Ward 86, -); Murphy 7 (Carayol 85, -)

Subs not used: Mills, Clough, Henderson, Cummings

Goals: Walker 15 (assisted Dowell), Dowell 44 (assisted Osborn), McKay 52 (assisted Osborn), Walker 84 (assisted McKay)

Yellows: Walker 73 (foul)

QPR: Smithies 5; Baptiste 3, Lynch 5, Robinson 3; Wheeler 5 (Mackie 45, 4), Bidwell 5; Scowen 5, Luongo 5, Freeman 5 (Ngbakoto 74, 5); Sylla 4 (Smith 45, 5), Washington 4

Subs not used: Furlong, Cousins, Manning, Lumley

Yellows: Freeman 70 (foul)

Referee – Tim Robinson (West Sussex) 6 Not as pedantic as he can be, but that was a clear penalty on Smith in the second half – shirt ripped up over his head, torso showing, right in front of the referee who waved it away. For somebody who’s so quick to award free kicks to the defending team at every corner for tiny, tiny infringements to be waving that away having looked right at it is poor. Not that it had an effect on the outcome of course.

Norwich 4 QPR 0, Sunday May 7, 2017, Championship

Yes, there was a very obvious Grant Hall-sized hole between the defence and the midfield. His presence would have made a hell of a difference, and QPR’s most recent losing run has coincided with his knee injury. But he’s just a decent player, not our Lord and Saviour, and we’ve got to have a better plan than this for when he’s unavailable next season. Why we’ve abandoned the idea of using Perch in there when Hall’s out, despite Perch looking a good deal better there than he ever does at right back (unlucky to be penalised here by Robinson for his first clean tackle in six months mind you), despite Darnell Furlong being a far better bet than him on the right of the defence, I cannot explain.

The protection afforded the defence by the midfield was worse than non-existent. Michael Doughty following in the footsteps of Sean Goss and Michael Petrasso with a sudden, unexpected start here after months of in-action. This will surely be the last rites of Doughty’s QPR career which has lasted eight years as a professional during which time he’s made just six starts. On the ball, some nice passes, but without it he’s simply not quick enough. There’s no engine on him, he can’t get around the pitch. He was hopelessly schooled here. Only Murphy’s decision to execute a fairly flagrant dive in the penalty area over Nedum Onuoha – Robinson didn’t award a penalty but didn’t book him either strangely – stopped a particularly harrowing 50 yard slog down the field in vain pursuit of the Norwich man ending with Doughty and the ball in the back of the net. He will get a decent club at his level in League One, where he’s impressed before at Swindon, and knowing our luck get sold for £4m in 18 months’ time, but he doesn’t look a Championship player at all and his time is surely up here now sadly. If you can bear to watch the highlights again, look at him for the first goal – five yards behind the play, blowing.

Norwich: Ruddy 6; Pinto 6 (Godfrey 86, -), Martin 6, Klose 6, Dijks 6; Howson 7, Dorrans 7; Hoolahan 7, Pritchard 8 (Maddison 71, 6), Murphy 8; Oliveira 6 (Jerome 61, 5)

Subs not used: Wildschut, Tettey, McGovern, Murphy

Goals: Hoolahan 22 (unassisted), 90+2 (assisted Jerome), Pritchard 60 (assisted Hoolahan), Murphy 85 (unassisted)

QPR: Smithies 5; Perch 5, Onuoha 6, Lynch 6, Robinson 5 (Bowler 69, 7); Luongo 5, Doughty 4, Manning 4; Wszolek 4, Smith 4 (Freeman 45, 6), Washington 5 (Grego-Cox 81, -)

Subs not used: Goss, Ingram, Petrasso, Furlong

Referee – Tim Robinson (West Sussex) 6 Fixation with awarding a free kick to the defensive side at the majority of corners remains. Penalised Perch for the first good tackle he’s made in about six months, with an assistant referee standing three yards away giving nothing. Irritating in a non-competitive game.

Leeds 0 QPR 0, Saturday March 11, 2017, Championship

They couldn’t, for a mixture of reasons. Conor Washington missed the two key chances. The first, after six minutes, looked a sitter from a couple of yards out as Darnell Furlong, who has a prodigious leap on him, flicked a whipped Luke Freeman corner on at the near post. Leeds full back Berardi appeared to take the ball off Washington’s toe but referee Tim Robinson awarded a goal kick.

After Washington’s second miss both managers embarked on a quick flurry of substitutions. Leeds sent O’Kane and Sacko on for Roofe and Vieira to no real positive effect, then brought in a half-arsed Doukara for Alfonso which made them worse. Holloway replaced his front three with Sylla, Mackie and Ngbakoto on for Washington, Smith and Wszolek. The craft of the Polish winger was missed in the closing stages, but Mackie provided niggle value, breaking up the closing stages as Leeds tried to push on. He was booked after a typical football scrap – lots of gentle pushes and dramatic fallings over – with O’Kane in injury time which wouldn’t have happened at all if Tim Robinson wasn’t so keen to award a free kick to the defensive team everybody somebody tries to take a corner.

Leeds: Green 6; Ayling 7, Bartley 6, Jansson 6, Berardi 5; Bridcutt 6, Vieira 6 (O’Kane 78, 6); Roofe 6 (Sacko 60, 6), Hernandez 6, Pedraza 6 (Doukara 73, 5); Wood 5

Subs not used: Cooper, Silvestri, Taylor, Dallas

Bookings: Ayling 35 (foul), Alfonso 48 (foul), Bridcutt 66 (foul), O’Kane 90+4 (ungentlemanly)

QPR: Smithies 6; Furlong 6, Onuoha 8, Lynch 7, Bidwell 6; Freeman 8, Hall 7, Luongo 7; Wszolek 7 (Ngbakoto 79, 6), Smith 6 (Sylla 78, 6), Washington 6 (Mackie 80, 6)

Subs not used: Goss, Ingram, Manning, Morrison

Bookings: Bidwell 87 (foul), Mackie 90+4 (ungentlemanly)

Referee – Tim Robinson (West Sussex) 6 A bit of an odd performance really. Several times, for both sides, what seemed like fairly obvious free kicks were waved away only for fouls to be awarded for other lesser incidents later on. No arguments with any of the bookings really, although the Mackie and O’Kane incident only happened because, as he does all the bloody time, Robinson had awarded a free kick to the defending team at a corner for no reason whatsoever. Bit of a fuss pot.

Newcastle 2 QPR 2, Wednesday February 1, 2017, Championship

Shelvey’s petulant kick out at Mackie before he was subbed could have brought more punishment from referee Tim Robinson, as could Joel Lynch’s apparently deliberate trample of Ameobi out by the corner flag which roused the Geordies briefly. That suggested Newcastle were frustrated but, in truth, QPR’s goal threat had dissipated and although the best travelling support (volume wise) the club has enjoyed for some time kept the singing going, hope appeared to be running out until Clark intervened.

Newcastle: Darlow 7; Yedlin 6, Lascelles 6, Clark 5, Dummett 5; Hayden 6, Shelvey 7; Gouffran 6, Perez 5 (Diame 86, -), Ritchie 7; Murphy 6 (Ameobi 66, 6)

Subs not used: Hanley, Lazaar, Gamez, Sels, Mitrovic

Goals: Shelvey 1 (Unassisted), Ritchie 54 (assisted Hayden)

Bookings: Ritchie 89 (foul)

QPR: Smithies 8; Furlong 6 (Goss 81, -), Onuoha 7, Lynch 7, Bidwell 7; Luongo 7, Perch 7, Manning 8 (Freeman 66, 5); Wszolek 7, Washington 8, Mackie 7 (Lua Lua 74, 5)

Subs not used: Cousins, Ingram, Doughty, Petrasso

Goals: Washington 44 (assisted Bidwell) Clark own goal 89 (assisted Lua Lua)

Bookings: Perch 44 (foul)

Referee – Tim Robinson (West Sussex) 6 Nowhere near as annoying as he was in our home match with Wolves, but still not great. Missed both Shelvey’s kick out at Mackie, and Lynch’s stamp on Ameobi. Seemed to lose the plot rather in the last ten minutes, with fouls awarded for very little and other obvious bad tackles waved on.

QPR 1 Wolves 2, Thursday December 1, 2016, Championship

Robinson had already awarded Wolves a free kick from QPR’s first corner of the game when goalkeeper Carl Ikeme seemed to simply fumble the ball in a crowded six yard box. This time the former QPR loanee definitely dropped it clean, under no pressure at all, and yet the whistle was once again blown immediately and the visitors awarded a free kick. This continued all half to the point where corners became completely pointless – player trots over to take it, players come up from the back to attack it, ball comes over, whistle gets blown, free kick the other way. I wondered if it might be worth saving time and just forfeiting them. “Corner”, “nah you’re alright ref, let them have a goal kick and let’s at least try and get home before first light you pedantic schlong”.

Odd that never once in these gatherings of players in the penalty area did Robinson feel the defending team had sinned. I mean, it’s the defending team more likely to commit a foul isn’t it? They’re the ones trying to stop the goal, they’re the ones doing the blocking. But no, every Wolves corner was immediately a QPR free kick, every QPR corner immediately a Wolves free kick, and nothing that anybody said or did was going to sway Robinson from his manic obsession that whatever happened at Loftus Road on Thursday night, nobody was going to be scoring from a wide set piece on his watch.

That didn’t, however, stop James Perch having a little go at changing the official’s mind. Having, according to Holloway, pointed out that Ikeme had merely dropped the ball, as Ikeme is rather prone to doing, the full back was immediately yellow carded. This under the new dissent rules introduced this season which still allow players to scream at referees, still allow Wayne Rooney to follow the man in black around for the entire game trying to officiate it for him, but do not allow any movement of the hands or arms to express displeasure at whatever bullshit has been awarded this time – because that, of course, looks bad.

Some sympathy for Perch there then, a nonsense yellow card for mildly complaining about a crap decision by a terrible referee, but none for what he did next.

The match, such as it was, trudged on through another 20 minutes or so at a pace that made Bob Malcolm look like Usain Bolt. Everything was a free kick. Everything. Everything. That’s a free kick. That’s a free kick. That’s a free kick. This is a free kick. Don’t do that. Stop doing that. Don’t do that either. Whistle. Whistle. Whistle. Stop. Start. Stop. Whistle. Don’t do that.
That’s a free kick. No more of that. Free kick there. That’s a free kick. That’s a foul. This is a foul. Foul there. That’s a free kick. Not there. No, there. There. Not there. Take that again. Free kick. Everything that is, apart from a a very good shout for a handball in the Wolves area by Doherty midway through the first half. That was a corner apparently. Which was then, as per the script, immediately turned round into a Wolves free kick.

Robinson like the worst kind of pernickety, nagging, relentless other half who you end up beating to death with the frying pan after 20 years and instructing your lawyer with a smile “when they strap me to the chair please let the people know the murder was just”. Why do people like this go into refereeing? What possible pleasure can they get from choking already poor football matches to death?

The desire to see somebody remove the whistle from Robinson’s possession and bury it so far up his arse he’d need horribly invasive surgery to ever be able to find and use it again was so overwhelming I almost went down there and did it myself. Of the first 35 minutes, I’d estimate the ball was in play for about 48 seconds, during which time Alex Smithies produced a flying save to his right like few I’ve ever seen before to keep out a firmly struck volley from Helder Costa, and Nedum Onuoha smacked one over at the other end when the ball fell to him on the edge of the area. Two of the free kicks, both of which looked harsh to me, were kicked straight into Ikeme’s arms by Tjaronn Chery without the keeper having to move.

Honestly, BT Open Reach go faster than this match. The first half an hour lasted as long as the Cretaceous Period.

And then it happened. The all-too-often spotted James Perch brain fart. Less of a fart, more of a full on beer shit in truth, given what had happened at Ipswich. Robinson had to get a decision right eventually, and sadly it was this one. On a yellow card, the former Wigan and Newcastle man decided to get airborn and fly into a wild fool’s mission of a challenge on Wolves’ Matt Doherty as he cut in from the left wing. Luckily he didn’t connect too much with the player, or he might have killed him, but a yellow card was the only option and Perch headed off for an early bath, money well earned for the week and no need for him to make that long trip up to Rotherham next weekend now either. I’m alright Jack, pull the fucking ladder up.

QPR: Smithies 8; Perch 2, Onuoha 5, Lynch 6, Robinson 4; Hall 6; Luongo 5, Sandro 5 (Henry 61, 5), Chery 5; Polter 5 (Sylla 67, 5), Washington 5 (Ngbakoto 46, 6)

Subs not used: Ingram, Gladwin, Cousins, Bidwell

Goals: Lynch 90 (assisted Robinson)

Red Cards: Perch 35 (two yellows)

Yellow Cards: Perch 9 (dissent), Perch 35 (foul), Luongo 51 (foul)

Wolves: Ikeme 6 (Lonergan 81, -); Iorfa 6, Baath 6, Stearman 6, Doherty 6; Coady 6, Saiss 7, Edwards 7; Costa 7, Dicko 6 (Bodvarsson 76, 6), Cavaleiro 6 (Saville 73, 6)

Subs not used: Wallace, Price, Hause, Enobakhare

Goals: Edwards 60 (assisted Dicko), Costa 67 (assisted Saiss)

Yellow cards: Cavaleiro 49 (foul), Batth 78 (dissent)

Referee – Tim Robinson (West Sussex) 3 Insufferable.

QPR 1 Fulham 3, Saturday February 8, 2016, Championship

But there was some sort of rally at the start of the second half as Mackie freed Hoilett on the edge of the box to burst into the area only for Michael Madl to chop him down right on the line. It was the dictionary definition of a yellow card, but referee Tim Robinson didn’t even speak to the offender, and then allowed Scott Parker to stand seven yards away from the kick as it was taken. As QPR - stupidly, moronically - decided to touch the ball rather than just hitting it, Parker was only about a foot away from it when it was finally struck by Phillips and was therefore able to block it away. Shambolic refereeing all round really, and Onuoha was subsequently yellow carded for telling him as much.

It was a curious performance from Robinson on his first ever outing at Loftus Road. Not exactly a difficult game to control, given how totally uncompetitive it was, but he nevertheless made a bit of a pig’s ear of it. Later Jamie O’Hara was carded, either for a foul in back play or something he’d said, or both. When you’re upsetting players from both sides equally to the point where they’re all getting booked for dissent you’ve got to have a look closer to home I think. Hall was later yellow carded for a foul nowhere near as bad as Madl’s, in a more neutral area, while in the first half a seemingly obvious hack on Massimo Luongo as he accelerated into a dangerous area brought no free kick at all.

It was a curious performance from Robinson on his first ever outing at Loftus Road. Not exactly a difficult game to control, given how totally uncompetitive it was, but he nevertheless made a bit of a pig’s ear of it. Later Jamie O’Hara was carded, either for a foul in back play or something he’d said, or both. When you’re upsetting players from both sides equally to the point where they’re all getting booked for dissent you’ve got to have a look closer to home I think. Hall was later yellow carded for a foul nowhere near as bad as Madl’s, in a more neutral area, while in the first half a seemingly obvious hack on Massimo Luongo as he accelerated into a dangerous area brought no free kick at all.

When, midway through the half, Jamie Mackie caught Fulham pissing around in possession and ran clear on goal only to be chopped down by Dan Burn a red card seemed the only likely outcome. Robinson bottled the big decision and showed a yellow, before then booking O’Hara a short time later, and speaking to Mackie at length about his own dissent – a farcical five minutes at the hands of an official out of his depth.

QPR: Smithies 6; Perch 5, Onuoha 4, Hall 5, Konchesky 4; Phillips 3 (Chery 76, 6), Toszer 3, Luongo 5, Hoilett 5 (El Khayati 65, 6); Polter 4 (Washington 46, 5), Mackie 6

Subs not used: Hill, Henry, Ingram, Petrasso

Goals: Chery 89 (assisted Tozser)

Bookings: Onuoha 48 (dissent), Hall 82 (foul)

Fulham: Lonergan 6; Fredericks 7, Madl 6, Burn 8, Christensen – (Garbutt 6, 8); Amorebieta 6, Parker 7 (Ince 78, 6), O’Hara 7, Cairney 8; McCormack 8, Dembele 7 (Hundman 84, -)

Subs not used: Richards, Smith, Kacaniklic, Lewis

Goals: McCormack 35 (assisted Cairney), Dembele 41 (assisted Garbutt), Cairney 45+2 (assisted Dembele)

Bookings: Burn 63 (foul), O’Hara 65 (dissent)

Referee – Tim Robinson (West Sussex) 4 Made rather a pig’s ear of a one-sided, uncompetitive game which doesn’t bode particularly well. One red card challenge from Burn only received a yellow, one yellow card challenge on Hoilett didn’t get a card at all, one foul on Luongo was waved away altogether, two players were booked for dissent when their frustration with the officials all became too much for them… but he was very hot and precise about the placement of throw ins. Not as bad as QPR, but not far off.


Robinson followed his opening day at Loftus Road with two red cards in Reading’s 2-0 win against Barnsley and has so far booked 66 players and sent five off in 20 games.

The Charlton game was Robinson’s first in lockdown and, for him, he seemed unusually laid back and lenient with it. Just one card there, and one card only in five of the six games he did during that summer period, lifting him to season totals of 91 yellows and just s single red in 31 appointments (2.93 bookings a game). Seven yellows at Fulham v Leeds was by far and away his biggest haul in the elongated season. He refereed Derby five times last year – a 3-1 win at Birmingham on the final day, a 3-1 home loss to Brentford who were the best team they’d played all season, a 2-2 draw at Boro, 1-0 home win against Preston and 2-2 draw at Stoke in August where they equalised with a penalty.

The totals were far higher in 2018/19 – 130 yellows (3.7) and eight reds from 35 games. He booked nine and sent one off in Brentford’s 3-1 home win against Birmingham but there was a six and one, and a couple of five and one hauls in there as well.

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