Beppe Sannino refused to discuss the unbelievable penalty decision during last night’s game with Doncaster Rovers but he did criticise Watford striker Mathias Ranegie following his red card.
Ranegie was sent off in the 19th minute when he kicked out at James Husband after the Doncaster left back pushed him in the face as the pair got up.
Rovers subsequently gained control for a period and went on to open the scoring five minutes later through a well-worked goal by Chris Brown.
The momentum should have shifted again shortly before half-time when Troy Deeney was pulled down by goalkeeper Sam Johnstone when a goal appeared inevitable. However, referee Chris Sarginson somehow failed to give the penalty and send off Johnstone.
Watford equalised through Ikechi Anya in the second half but Donny laid siege to the Hornets’ goal in the final 20 minutes and scored the winner in the third minute of injury-time through Billy Sharp.
Sannino has stated since his arrival that he doesn’t like to comment on referees’ performances and said: “I always say that I don’t like to talk about the referees and I won’t do that this evening. When the referee takes a decision then we have to respect it. I would like to talk about the game and not the referee.”
“I want to speak about the game; a game when we played ten versus 11 for 70 minutes,” Sannino added when asked again about the penalty decision.
“Maybe it [the result] was a little bit harsh.”
Watford were defensively disorganised in the final quarter and Doncaster had several glorious chances to win the contest before Sharp’s late goal.
Sannino said: “In the last 20 minutes you can expect a team who is playing 11 versus ten at home and need to win to survive to push on more.
“Don’t forget we were also ten versus 11 for a large part of the game.
“So this is why you saw more Doncaster efforts in the final 20 minutes than Watford. But I would like to see more experience on the pitch in the last 30 seconds of the game.”
With Sannino alluding to fatigue being a factor, he was asked whether he regretted not making more substitutions earlier; he brought on Fernando Forestieri around the hour mark but then only made one additional replacement and that came in the 88th minute, with wing back Davide Faraoni coming on for centre midfielder Cristian Battocchio.
Watford’s bench also included goalkeeper Gary Woods, three centre backs and only one centre midfielder, Lewis McGugan.
Sannino replied: “Battocchio was affected by cramp so I made that change, with Faraoni coming on. I chose Faraoni because I didn’t have the same kind of player as Battocchio on the bench.
“I don’t think I have to give too much of an explanation about the substitutions.”
Despite having ten men for 70 minutes, Watford were equal to Doncaster for most of the match, excluding the final quarter.
Sannino added: “I am proud of the effort of my lads but we still go back to Watford with no points. I am still disappointed about that.”