Football

Bruce unhappy with Attwell display

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Sunderland manager Steve Bruce tempered his criticism of referee Stuart Attwell after he awarded a "crazy" goal to Liverpool in the 2-2 draw at Anfield.

The Black Cats boss said he did not want to incur the wrath of the Football Association by giving his true thoughts but was deeply unhappy with the performance of the 27-year-old official.

"I've been in enough trouble so I don't want to talk about it but you all witnessed it and he got it wrong," said Bruce.

Attwell, who awarded the infamous "ghost goal" in the Watford v Reading Championship match two years ago, allowed Dirk Kuyt's opening strike to count after ruling Michael Turner had taken a free-kick when he appeared to roll it back to goalkeeper Simon Mignolet and Fernando Torres nipped in.

Darren Bent hit back with a penalty and a header either side of half-time before Gerrard nodded in Torres' near-post cross to salvage a point but the official's performance was a major talking point.

Bruce added: "The free-kick was 25 yards from where the incident was and I think everyone in the ground realised that too. He has put his whistle to his mouth three times and if he is in doubt he should have given the free-kick to be taken in the right position.

"We are going to talk about this crazy goal and not the performance of the team, which was terrific."

Liverpool manager Roy Hodgson felt his side deserved their point despite failing to capitalise on their early goal.

"It wasn't the result we wanted but in many ways it was the performance we wanted," he said.

"We dominated the game after that and created lots of chances but only scored from one of them. I think over the 90 minutes we were more than worth the point we got."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

Topics:
Sunderland
Michael Turner
Reading
Simon Mignolet
Watford
Football
Championship
Premier League
Steve Bruce
Fernando Torres
Dirk Kuyt
Darren Bent
Liverpool
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