South Wales derby marred by coin attack on referee

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The Independent Online

Dave Jones yesterday insisted the Cardiff City supporter who hit referee Mike Dean with a coin ruined a pulsating South Wales derby.

Dean drew blood and required medical treatment after he was struck above the right eye in the 42nd minute of the 2-2 Championship draw.

A supporter was arrested at Ninian Park but Cardiff manager Jones believes the incident overshadowed a fantastic advert for Welsh football. "It was an absolutely crazy thing to do," he said. "Throwing a coin could have easily taken someone's eye out. It could have hit one of our players, one of the Swansea players, or the referee. Why do it? It's the last thing we need here.

"We've worked really hard to get away from all that and improve our image – I can't understand the mentality of the person. We have all the banter, the shouting and atmosphere but it's just a football match. I thought those days were long gone. It was total stupidity and it has taken the edge off a great game of football. It's sad because everyone will be talking about the man who threw the coin rather than a game which had everything – excitement, controversy and a last-minute penalty. Swansea scored so late and thought they had won it but we kept fighting and deserved to gain the point."

Cardiff trailed twice before Ross McCormack's disputed injury-time penalty handed them a share of the spoils to leave the Bluebirds in sixth place. Nathan Dyer's opener for Swansea was cancelled out by Michael Chopra before Joe Allen looked set to be the hero for the visitors when the teenager fired home in the 88th minute. But a minute into injury-time Dean was at the centre of the action again when he awarded the hosts a debatable penalty after Ashley Williams had pushed McCormack.

McCormack showed composure and rounded off a memorable week in which he scored the winner for Scotland against Iceland on Wednesday. And on a day of drama, Swansea substitute Tom Butler was sent off after the final whistle for abusive language.

Cardiff chairman Peter Ridsdale said afterwards the club intend to ban the coin-thrower for life. "This behaviour has no place at all in football," he said.

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