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Gillingham manager Steve Evans moving on after apology from match official Samuel Barrott

Gillingham boss Steve Evans says he’s received an indirect apology from referee Samuel Barrott after awarding opponents Lincoln City a controversial penalty.

Evans said after Friday's match that City player Brennan Johnson dived to win the spot-kick and contacted the EFL head of referees straight away to voice his displeasure.

Steve Evans was booked by referee Samuel Barrott on Friday for dissent Picture: Keith Gillard
Steve Evans was booked by referee Samuel Barrott on Friday for dissent Picture: Keith Gillard

He later suggested that the laws of the game need changing to punish players retrospectively for acts of simulation.

Following his conversations with the EFL head of referees Mike Jones, the Gills boss said: “He made a decision to call me on Monday morning, to confirm he had spoken to the match referee. The referee, with the benefit of looking at the television coverage when he got home, knew it was a big error, a big mistake, and he apologised via Mike.

“It was a poor decision and he recognised as well that it was a big factor in changing the game because we had got on top at that stage.

“He is young, he is highly thought of and when you get that honesty from a referee then you have to accept it and believe he made the error on a genuine basis. We accept it and we move on.”

In calling for a change to the rules, Evans commented on the club's website, saying: “We had concerns about this type of thing after we did our homework for the match.

“It is not the fact Lincoln have had double the amount of penalties versus any other team in the top six, it is when you look back at them individually. That makes you instruct your players to be extra careful, that should never have to be said.

“Simulation and the conning of match officials needs to be stamped out the game and that is why we should ban players retrospectively. It happens in other countries and needs to be implemented here ASAP.”

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