Blackburn Rovers manager Tony Mowbray criticised referee Anthony Taylor for the role he played in Rovers’ 3-0 defeat to Sheffield United on Saturday afternoon.

Referee Anthony Taylor sent off Sheffield United’s Chris Basham and Blackburn Rovers’ Richie Smallwood in a hectic second half at Bramall Lane. All three of The Blades’ goals were scored after Smallwood was sent off after 71 minutes, as Tony Mowbray’s side capitulated late on once again.

Two goals from Billy Sharp and an 82nd minute strike from David McGoldrick sees Chris Wilder’s side move onto 44 points in 4th place, just four points behind Norwich City in 2nd place.

Blackburn Rovers are now without a win in five Championship games, losing their last three fixtures, seeing them drop to 15th place and way out of the chasing pack.

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After the game, Rovers boss Mowbray spoke to the club website to discuss Saturday’s clash.

“I think the sad thing about today is that my first thoughts are about the officials,” Mowbray said.

“The referee didn’t manage the game well at all from start to finish. I think today he thought he would come down to the Championship and have an easy day but he mis-managed it.

“He was making random decisions, guessing with his decisions. 

“For 70 minutes we were very good and looked like we would be the team to win the game. But I’ve said to the players that it’s too common for us to concede a goal and then quickly concede a second one soon after.

“It’s not the first time that’s happened but I hope it’s the last time. The concentration in adversity needs to be better. For a long time today I thought we were pretty good, but the result is the result.

“I’ve not seen the Smallwood red card incident again, but having seen it right in front of me, I thought Richie caught Elliott [Bennett] rather than their player. I think the referee was looking for any excuse to even things up.”

The boss went on to speak about his side’s chances prior to the sending off of midfielder Smallwood.

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“At 10 v 11 there was only one winner. We were being patient, we were getting in behind and putting balls into the box, he added.

“You have the home crowd singing ‘You Don’t Know What You’re Doing’ and then the referee makes a ridiculous decision.

“But I can’t stand here and blame the referee for the three goals that we conceded. That was down to some ridiculous defending. I’ve told them all in the dressing room and that’s come from some pretty experienced players.”


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Writer for The72 and currently studying at the University of Lincoln. Based in Peterborough/ Lincoln and often writing about Peterborough United amongst other Championship and League One clubs.