Today’s Newcastle Man City match meant nothing to Rangers fans, except for one utterly key incident which illustrated why the targeting of referee Willie Collum is just deflection from certain parties in our support eager to blame everyone else.
For those who didn’t see it, Kieran Trippier caught Kevin DeBruyne from behind, in a tackle literally identical to John Lundstram’s.
The outcome? The same. Referee Jarred Gillet gave a straight red card.
Everyone was outraged.
The difference? VAR. Gillet was called over to review the incident, and after taking a long look downgraded it to yellow. A fairly just outcome.
Collum did not have that luxury at his disposal so made the same call Gillet did today – a red card.
Anyone blaming him for our dropping of two points is rather missing the point – he got one decision marginally wrong, Kent putting Lunny in the position to potentially give him a decision to make.
He did not, however, get Morelos wrong, and even Tav agreed with that one.
No, stop blaming the referee, as many still are – Rangers might have been unlucky with the first red but VAR would have saved it, as it did Trippier. Would Lundstram being on the pitch have helped? Who knows, it didn’t help on Tuesday or in Belgium.
And the second was clear cut.
Rangers just didn’t produce enough on the day to merit a win and we’d much rather not whine about a referee who is probably getting death threats and abuse online because of this.