Armada owner, coach cry foul after controversial PK in Edmonton



It would be understandable if you dozed off at some point during Sunday’s meeting between FC Edmonton and Jacksonville Armada FC. The match had no postseason implications and tired legs for the visiting Armada didn’t lead to much urgency.

Hopefully, though, you woke up in time to catch the stoppage time fireworks that ended with the Eddies taking all three points and Jacksonville wondering what role the video replay board at Miller Stadium played in referee¬†Yusri Rudolf’s decision making.

With seconds remaining in the scoreless match, Edmonton’s Sainey Nyassi mounted one last effort with a run down the edge of Jacksonville’s penalty area to get by Mechack Jerome. The attacker went down after a challenge from Jerome, immediately eliciting a whistle from Rudolf.

Rudolf held his arm up indicating the Eddies had earned a free kick and the home side quickly swarmed the official, vehemently arguing that the foul had occurred just inside box. Every Edmonton player surrounded Rudolf pointed and shouted at the video replay on display for everyone in attendance which plainly showed that Nyassi’s feet were inside the area when he went down.

After a minute of protests from Edmonton and deliberating on his headset with another official on the crew, Rudolf changed his mind. He pointed to the spot and Daryl Fordyce stepped up to seal the victory for Edmonton.

Tempering his frustrations as much as possible after the final whistle, Jackosnville’s head coach Mark Lowry plainly stated his disappointment and that the video replay unquestionably factored into Rudolf’s decision.

“I mean, it’s against the rules,” Lowry said. “You can’t look at the video screen and change your mind. So it’s just disappointing from our standpoint. “Everyone thought he [looked at the video]. It looked like he did.”

“If Edmonton break us down and score a goal, you don’t mind,” he added. “But to have a goal like that, no one deserves that. I wouldn’t even want it the other way around, by the way. That’s not how I want to win games myself.”

Jacksonville’s owner Mark Frisch took to Twitter to voice his exasperation over the controversial decision as well.

It’s not the first time that Frisch — who also serves as the Chairman of the NASL’s Board of Governors — has set his sights on a referee after calls have gone against Jacksonville while they’ve been battling to not finish the year at the bottom of the league standings.

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The quality of refereeing has been a hot topic throughout the NASL this year. Back in July, Tampa Bay Rowdies owner Bill Edwards penned an open letter lamenting calls against his team and released a video highlighting certain examples. Edwards was levied with a considerable fine by the NASL front office for his actions.

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