Middlesbrough boss Jonathan Woodgate issues strong message after costly refereeing decisions in Brentford defeat
Middlesbrough head coach Jonathan Woodgate was left frustrated at two costly refereeing decisions in his side’s 1-0 defeat to Brentford at the Riverside.
Boro striker Ashley Fletcher had two goals disallowed after a convincing first half from the hosts - the first for handball and the second for offside.
Yet replays showed both goals should have stood, before Brentford striker Ollie Watkins scored the only goal of the game shortly after the break.
When asked about the decisions after the game, Woodgate said: “Two mistakes from the linesman in my view where Ashley Fletcher is two yards onside, I mean two yards, I can't understand how you can't see that.
“Again, he gives a handball. My view is VAR is in the Premier League, why isn't it in the Championship? Why? Is the Premier League more special than the Championship? Not in my eyes.
“This is a league we want to get out of and big decisions don't go your way, so I'm not happy about it. On the plus side, I thought my players were absolutely outstanding. Especially in the first half.”
Despite the result, Woodgate was pleased with the way his players competed against the Bees, as the visitors struggled to get out of their own half in the opening 45 minutes.
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Thomas Frank’s side improved after the break, though, as Boro were left to rue their missed opportunities.
“OK, in the second half, especially in the first 10 minutes of the second half, we need to tighten up a little bit,” Woodgate added.
“But me being a Middlesbrough fan, I'd have been proud of my team. They gave everything for the shirt there, you could see how hard they were working, pressing hard, running the extra yard.
“I thought they were really good, listen, it's a work in progress.”
When asked the reason behind Boro’s slow start after the break, Woodgate replied: “I'm not sure, I'll look back on it. They started the fresher of the two teams and they capitalised.
“There are a few sloppy areas in starting positions which I’m not happy about and decision making, which I'm not happy about but we'll move on.”