Are We Really 'Dirty'?

Berwick are starting  to get a bit of a bad reputation. It's been red card after red card this season. And over the last two or three seasons we've amassed nearly 30 red cards. There have been suggestions from some quarters that deducting points is a suitable punishment for Berwick. This is of course a ridiculous suggestion, but the SFA are into doing ridiculous things (ala Hamilton's 15 point deduction last season), how many more red cards will it take to push the big-wigs at the SFA over the edge and make them consider taking drastic action?

In August Berwick Rangers FC were fined £2,000 as a punishment for last season's poor disciplinary record, it was hoped that we'd see an improvement, but so far this season we have averaged a red card every two games. Paul Smith stated at the beginning of the season that any player who is dismissed for anything but an honest tackle would be fined their weeks wages, appearance money and bonuses. This has done nothing to deter the players. If anything, the discipline in the side has gone from bad to worse.

It must be said though, we have been on the receiving end of some awful refereeing decisions. Take Gordon Forrest's sending off at Hampden back in August. Gordon won the ball with a well timed, clean challenge but the referee mis-interpreted it and sent him off. The decision left both sets of fans and both managers stunned. This is only one of a handful of undeserved dismissals. Below is a look at some red cards from the last year or so. Are we really that dirty? Decide for yourself...

Match Incident Deserved?
1-1 Queen's (14/10/00) Lloyd Haddow committed a bad foul and retaliated. Yes
5-3 W Forfar (7/10/00) Darren Smith was punched, he retaliated and was sent packing- the Forfar player should have gone too though. Yes
2-2 Stranraer (19/8/00) Gary Wood was clean through on goal, he was brought down, he had a bit of a niggle and Brian McGarry sent him off- and awarded a free kick to Stranraer. Probably Not
0-1 L Queen's Park (5/8/00) A free kick was awarded against Alan Neill, he kicked the ball away and was shown a yellow then a red.  Yes- A silly second booking
0-1 L Queen's Park (5/8/00) Gordon Forrest tackled Kevin Findlayson- cleanly. Findlayson blatantly dived and rolled about the floor to get Gordon sent-off. No
0-0 Albion Rovers (29/5/00) Gary Wood was booked for unintentional hand ball and then sent-off for back-chatting the referee. Probably Not
0-1 D East Fife (23/4/00) Davie Watt was elbowed in the face as he went for a header, and Cassidy made a ridiculous decision and sent him off. Only he knows what for. No
0-0 Dumbarton (1/4/00) Stevie Laidlaw and Dumbarton's Bonar had a punch-up in the box. Yes
1-3 L East Fife (21/3/00) Spider Ramsay lost the plot against his former employees. Fists flew and he was red-carded. Yes
0-2 L Forfar (7/3/00) Stevie Laidlaw was given two yellow cards for absolutely nothing. Neither were a foul, never mind a booking No
1-0 W East Stirling (5/2/00) Lloyd Haddow was sent off for two bookable offences. Both deserved- he had to walk. Yes
2-1 L Dumbarton (4/9/99) Kevin Magee walked for lashing out at a Sons player and then aiming foul and abusive language at the Referee. Yes
1-0 W East Fife (5/8/99) Paul Forrester was sent off for losing his temper and kicking the East Fife 'keeper in the back. Yes



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