Football: Kinnear bewildered

Wimbledon 1 Cort 28 Coventry City 2 Huckerby 17, Dublin 22 Attenda nce: 11,201
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The Independent Online
To hear some connected with Wimbledon you would think everything that happens to the team hits them out of a clear blue sky. The paranoid at Selhurst Park had their persecution complex further fed yesterday when the Sky Blues, without an away League goal this season, struck twice in the first 22 minutes.

This time it was not the whole world against Wimbledon, just the referee, so their manager Joe Kinnear thought. The last time Uriah Rennie took charge of a Dons game he turned down a penalty appeal, and this time he looked equallly unsympathetically on their claims after Gary Breen's second- half tackle on Efan Ekoku.

"He has not been the best of referees for us. Quite frankly I will be glad to see the back of him," he said. "We had him up at Derby and had an even more clear penalty turned down. Efan has beat them all for pace and I don't think he's going to go down in the area and he had to come off from the challenge."

A penalty then could have sparked the Dons' fightback after Darren Huckerby and Dion Dublin, back after suspension, had put Coventry ahead. Dublin's knockdown set up Huckerby for the opener, with a bicycle kick. Less flamboyant, but just as effective was Dublin's first time shot from 20 yards that made it 2-0. Neil Sullivan scuffed a clearance and Dublin beat the goalkeeper into the far corner.

Carl Cort's 28th-minute header from Vinnie Jones's swinging cross was all the home side had to show for their efforts to battle their way back. But Kinnear had to concede that luck, fate or conspiracy theories did not enter into it. "We aren't good enough," he concluded.