Houghton kicks up a storm

Alleged abuse of referee might land the Indian coach in trouble

Sources in the AIFF said Dinesh Nair, the fourth referee in the match, had lodged a complaint alleging that Houghton had abused him for signalling the addition of two minutes in the first half add-on time by calling him “you Indian referees.”

Houghton was furious with the addition of two minutes as he thought at least five minutes would be added as Clifford Miranda’s injury in the 15th minute had taken a lot of time and India were trailing 1-2 in the first half of the match which the home side eventually lost 3-6.
The Englishman came out of the technical area and started arguing with Nair who told him the decision on the add-on time was solely taken by the referee, the sources said. “The matter has now been referred to the Executive Committee,” the sources added.

“The issue will create a storm at the AGM, but before that the executive committee will deal with the matter,” the source said. However, the source added that with the Asian Cup in Doha in January, the Englishman is likely to be let off with a mild rap on his knuckles. When contacted, Nair did not deny that he had reported the matter to the AIFF, simply saying, “I won’t comment on the matter as I am not authorised to speak to the media.” Match referee D’Costa confirmed a report has been submitted to the AIFF on the complaint of Nair but refused to divulge the details. “I can’t speak on this issue. It is upto the AIFF to decide on it,” he said.

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