Norwich vent fury on referee

PREMIERSHIP RELEGATION STRUGGLE: Canaries cast adrift but Villa and Palace pick themselves up as Everton run out of ideas Leeds United2Norwich City1

In recent weeks disquiet had turned to despair and then to utter dejection. Now, besides the whirlpool of emotion which has sucked Norwich down, there is disrepute as well. The entire team, substitutes and all, will be reported to the Football Association following the mass protest to the referee, Alan Wilkie, after his final whistle sent them in the direction of the Endsleigh League.

Relegation can never be a pleasant experience and to lose your last lifeline on a moment of controversy is the cruellest cut of all. With the help of the obliging Leeds strikers, Norwich had ably defended a lead gifted them by John Lukic. Then, with 10 minutes remaining, Tony Yeboah tumbled over and Mr. Wilkie pointed to the spot.

"The worst decision I have ever seen," was a typical reaction afterwards and one expressed, according to the vexed visitors, by Gary McAllister, the Leeds captain.

As his players formed a menacing huddle around Mr Wilkie, Gary Megson raced on to the pitch to call off the hounds but later there was no holding back from the Norwich caretaker-manager, who, if he wants a referee to support his job application, need not bother the County Durham official.

"When we saw who was in charge we knew we would be treading on eggshells and nothing happened in the game to dispel our fears," Megson said. "The penalty just put the top hat on it. Leeds did not beat us today, the referee did."

Reading that, Mr Wilkie might be inclined to add Megson's name to the lengthy list of offenders he will drop on the FA's desk tomorrow. "All the Norwich team will be reported, I won't be isolating any one player," he said. "That would be impossible because they were all around me, even the reserve goalkeeper."

He added that it would not be right for him to "turn a blind eye" to such visible dissent. Norwich believe he should have done so when Rob Newman challenged the forceful Yeboah. "I played the ball, won the tackle fairly and I was deeply upset to see the penalty given," Newman said.

The Norwich players were ordered not to discuss the matter but could not help themselves. "It was disgraceful, as soon as the referee gave it he must have known he had made the wrong decision," said Jeremy Goss, for whom Elland Road proved to be a distant cry from the Olympic Stadium, Munich, where the glory game had arrived for him and his team in the Uefa Cup.

That was less than two years ago but a lifetime for a club who since then have lost two managers, two star strikers and subsequently lost their way.

With the Leeds equaliser, and with Aston Villa and Crystal Palace both ahead, Norwich had to chase a winner, leaving themselves vulnerable to Carlton Palmer's second successive steal in injury time which keeps his side gazing at a European horizon. Earlier this season that looked a possibility for Norwich once more. From the Premiership high of sixth to 22nd place, they have come a long way in a short time and right to the bitter end the journey was far from agreeable.

Goals: Ward (36) 0-1; McAllister (80, pen) 1-1; Palmer (90) 2-1.

Leeds United (4-4-2): Lukic; Kelly, Wetherall, Pemberton, Dorigo; Wallace (Sharp, 70), Palmer, McAllister, Speed; Yeboah (Whelan, 81), Deane. Substitute not used: Beeney (gk).

Norwich City (4-4-2): Marshall; Newman, Newsome, Polston, Bowen; Sutch, Crook (Bradshaw, 82) Goss, Ullathorne; Akinbiyi (Sheron, 58), Ward. Substitute not used: Rhodes (gk.)

Referee: A Wilkie (Chester-le-Street).

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant - Dublin

£13676.46 - £16411.61 per annum + OTE: SThree: SThree Trainee Recruitment Cons...

Ashdown Group: Marketing or Business Graduate Opportunity - Norwich - £22,000

£18000 - £22000 per annum + training: Ashdown Group: Business and Marketing Gr...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Are you great at building rela...

Ashdown Group: Database Analyst - Birmingham - £22,000 plus benefits

£20000 - £22000 per annum + excellent benefits: Ashdown Group: Application Sup...

Day In a Page

Fishing for votes with Nigel Farage: The Ukip leader shows how he can work an audience as he casts his line to the disaffected of Grimsby

Fishing is on Nigel Farage's mind

Ukip leader casts a line to the disaffected
Who is bombing whom in the Middle East? It's amazing they don't all hit each other

Who is bombing whom in the Middle East?

Robert Fisk untangles the countries and factions
China's influence on fashion: At the top of the game both creatively and commercially

China's influence on fashion

At the top of the game both creatively and commercially
Lord O’Donnell: Former cabinet secretary on the election and life away from the levers of power

The man known as GOD has a reputation for getting the job done

Lord O'Donnell's three principles of rule
Rainbow shades: It's all bright on the night

Rainbow shades

It's all bright on the night
'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before