Watford manager Walter Mazzarri bemoaned the performance of the referee following his side’s 3-1 loss to West Bromwich Albion at the Hawthorns on Saturday.
Graham Scott sent off Roberto Pereyra with five minutes remaining after the former Juventus attacker was adjudged to kick out at substitute James McClean.
The Italian described Scott’s performance as “terrible” and that he “changed the result of the game” in his post-match press conference.
Mazzarri unimpressed by "terrible" refereeing performance
In what was an exciting and physical clash, the Hornets succumbed to their second successive Premier League defeat to an in-form West Brom outfit.
Jonny Evans headed the visitors in front after just 16 minutes while Chris Brunt doubled the hosts’ advantage when his strike deflected off Zuniga and into Heurelho Gomes’ net. Watford did, however, seemingly find a route back into the game through Christian Kabaelse’s tap in in the second half.
Watford had the momentum and the better chances following the defender’s goal but were further set back when Roberto Pereyra received his marching orders from the referee following a coming together with James McClean.
Pereyra seemed angered that McClean had hit the ball towards him and kicked out at the Republic of Ireland international, causing the two to square off on the touchline. This resulted in not only a mass brawl between the two teams but a sending off for Pereyra while McClean escaped with just a yellow.
“I think that it [the sending off] was absolutely unfair.” Proclaimed Mazzarri. “It is normal that a player gives a small push, especially when the opponent is pushing them for the whole time. If one person is sent off, it had to be the other person [McClean]. If not, you should send both off. It should have never ended like that.”
The 55-year-old was also angered by the allowing of the first goal, believing his goalkeeper was illegally blocked as Chris Brunt’s corner was delivered.
“In football there are rules and they should be the same for everyone. On the first goal, Gomes was blocked and you cannot block the ‘keeper – when you block the goalkeeper it is a foul.
"He [Scott] has been terrible and he changed the result of the game. I always say what I see.
"We played a great game that was influenced and changed the final result because of the referee. To end up with ten men the way we played it’s something I don’t really like."
Watford performance impressed Mazzarri
In spite of the defeat, which sends the Yellows to tenth in the Premier League, Mazzarri was impressed by his players’ performance on the day. Watford had more possession, more shots, more corners and more shots on target than their opponents but only netted once due to some quality saves from Ben Foster.
Mazzarri, who said he would have liked to have seen 11 - 11 for the whole match, thought the Hertfordshire outfit deserved the win.
“We played the best football in an away game since I have arrived here.” He said. “We did not deserve to lose and, if we did deserve something, it was the victory because of the way we played.
“I told my players that I am very happy with their performance.”
The Watford boss also gave an update on Daryl Janmaat’s injury, stating they should be without the Dutch defender "for one, maximum two weeks.”
Watford will hope to get back to winning ways in their best ever start to a Premier League season next week when they host Everton at Vicarage Road.