Brian Allison’s sending off on Saturday has given rise to considerable debate and, having been contacted direct by a number of fans, I would like to clarify the Club’s position and also express my personal opinion as a qualified referee. In doing so, I wish to stress that I have no problem with Paul Robertson’s handling of the game, including this incident. Referees and their assistants are required to make on-the-spot decisions and such decisions, even when scrutinised endlessly in slow motion and in still shots, remain subjective.
At the time of the incident, from my vantage point in the stand some 20 yards away, I did not think the challenge merited a sending off and, having watched the incident countless times on the excellent Peterhead Media highlights package, I remain of the same opinion. My opinion, however, is simply that, and in considering whether or not to appeal the decision, I had to consider the financial implications (£500 deposit) and crucially, in order to be successful, whether or not there is irrefutable evidence that the decision was incorrect (*). This brings us straight back to the subjective nature of such decisions and, for that reason and in consultation with Greig McDonald, I have decided not to proceed with an appeal.
One other point to clarify is Brian’s “reaction” to the decision. It is ludicrous in the extreme to suggest that his quiet acceptance of the decision in any way reflected an admission of guilt. Brian is only too aware of the consequences of “arguing past the point of decision” and / or displaying dissent in any shape or form, following on from his sending off at Airdrie last season and his lack of reaction is no less than I would have expected from him, or indeed any of our players and management.
Stuart Brown, Operations Director
* Judicial Panel Protocol Extract – In very exceptional cases, where it can be demonstrated that an obvious refereeing error has occurred, a player or his club may submit to Fast Track Proceedings a claim of wrongful dismissal.