MLS referees embarrass themselves in front of national TV audience

It wasn’t a good day to be a PRO Referee. In both nationally televised MLS games on Sunday, referees messed up on similar calls that directly contributed to the outcome of each game.

The first, Sporting KC’s Dom Dwyer was tripped up by San Jose’s Andres Imperiale in the box and while it seemed obvious that would result in a second yellow and a penalty, nothing was called by 2008 MLS Referee of the Year Jair Marrufo. Minutes later, San Jose won a penalty (that was the right call) and scored to take a 1-0 win.

To let you know how bad of a call that was, Earthquakes manager Dominic Kinnear even thought that was a bad call. And that bad call helped them earn three points.

The second, Orlando City’s Cyle Larin was, as Orlando City’s Twitter account reported, getting dropkicked by New York Red Bulls center back Karl Ouimette. It could be debatable as whether or not this was done in the box but it very much was worth a straight red for denying a goal scoring opportunity. This time, 2013 MLS Referee of the Year Hilario Grajeda didn’t make the call. Right after that, the Red Bulls scored three goals in nine minutes to win 3-2.

This has many people up in arms and nobody is happy. This was just a sampling of the reaction to the Larin no call.

Instead of us talking about some great games that happened this weekend, we are once again talking about the ineptitude of the referees in MLS. There is no doubt these referees have a tough job but this happens multiple times a week and this isn’t even about arguing judgment calls. This is about missing clear, obvious calls that can be made by someone watching the game live from the midfield camera on a standard definition TV. This is a problem.

About Phillip Bupp

News editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing, highlight consultant for Major League Soccer as well as a freelance writer for hire. Opinions are my own but feel free to agree with them. Follow me on Twitter @phillipbupp