James Perch

By Anthony Marshall - Newcastle United Managing Editor


James Perch was left stunned after Sunday's 2-1 defeat at Wigan, revealing he had never been involved in a match like it.

United found themselves involved in a number of controversial incidents at the DW Stadium, all which seemed to go against them, as they made the trip back to Tyneside empty-handed.

With less than half-an-hour played, left-back Massadio Haidara was stretchered off with suspected knee ligament damage following a high, late challenge from Latics winger Callum McManaman, for which referee Mark Halsey didn't even award a free-kick.

And with the scores level at 1-1 and the game about to enter stoppage time, Wigan defender Maynor Figueroa flicked the ball across the penalty area with his hand, with it eventually bundled home by Arouna Kone.

Perch, who was Haidara's replacement, believes the Magpies had done enough to secure at least a share of the spoils, and told nufc.co.uk: "Everyone is gutted.

"The lads have put in everything and to come away with nothing is ridiculous.

"We thought we played really well. There was a little period in the first half where Wigan were good, but all in all I thought we were a bit better than them. We deserved at least a draw.

"I don't think I've ever been involved in a game where so many big decisions have gone against us.

"The handball for the goal is blatant. Everyone could see it at the time and everyone will see it on the replays.

"And the tackle was a bad one. I know referees get the odd thing wrong and I can accept that but 100 per cent he (McManaman) should have been sent off.

"Football isn't a nice game sometimes."

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