Marco Silva suggested referee Samuel Barrott was not “able to handle the pressure” of officiating big games after ten-man Fulham lost 3-0 to Newcastle United at St James’ Park on Saturday.
Raul Jimenez was sent off for a bizarre challenge on Sean Longstaff, jumping into and colliding with the Magpies midfielder midway through the first half, which Silva conceded was a fair decision.
The Cottagers kept the hosts at bay until the 57th minute, when teenager Lewis Miley opened the scoring. Miguel Almiron and former Fulham man Dan Burn also scored to get Eddie Howe’s side back to winning ways having lost their last three matches in all competitions.
Speaking in the post-match press conference, Silva was sharply critical of the match official for the lack of fouls called in his side’s favour.
“First, congratulations to Newcastle,” he said. They won the game and three points for them. They needed a calm game after the Champions League in midweek and they had it, but it was not our fault. We gave our best and did everything on the pitch.
“It was a really strange performance from the referee from the first minute to the last minute. The first foul for Fulham was after 21 minutes.
“[Jamaal] Lascelles cleared elbowed Raul [just before Jimenez’s red card] and not even a foul. I’m not saying red card, but a clear foul.
“After two minutes [later] he [Jimenez] has to be more calm and didn’t challenge in the right way and the ball was not there to challenge for. I can accept if they decide it’s a red card but what’s difficult for me is two minutes before, Lascelles’ elbow was not even a foul, not even a check.
“Everything was strange with the decisions. For a team to come to St James’ Park, they are a good side and their results at home speak for themselves, you have to have quality and I felt it was a match where we could match them.
“You need referees with experience and to be able to handle the pressure.”
Asked if the referee was not experienced enough, Silva said: “Clearly, no doubt.”