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Page last updated at 16:57 GMT, Tuesday, 13 May 2008 17:57 UK

Levein calls for referee overhaul

Dundee United manager Craig Levein
Levein has called for accountability over referees' mistakes

Dundee United manager Craig Levein has called for greater accountability and transparency for referees in Scotland.

The club were unhappy about several decisions made by referee Mike McCurry in Saturday's 3-1 defeat by Rangers.

"This is not an attack on one referee. What I'm unhappy about is a system where this is no accountability for referees who make mistakes," he said.

Levein called for fresh initiatives "to overcome any perceived bias or external influence behind decision-making".

United are planning to submit a complaint to the Scottish FA over the standard of refereeing in the country.

Club chief executive Stephen Thompson will contact the authorities over what he sees as perceived bias towards the Old Firm by officials.

The SFA have chosen to criticise only me for voicing criticism of the referee's decisions

Dundee United manager
Craig Levein

In a statement on the club's website, Levein said he was unhappy that the SFA had criticised him for his post-match comments.

"Mr McCurry has now admitted that he got two major decisions wrong - decisions that arguably lost us points and possibly several hundred thousand pounds," the United manager said.

"We feel he got considerably more wrong. And yet the SFA have chosen to criticise only me for voicing criticism of the referee's decisions and made it clear they will not accept such criticism.

"However, surely it's the incompetence on the part of one of their key figures that should be questioned and examined by them, with the individual being called to account."

Referee Mike McCurry
McCurry has come under fire from United management

Levein said it may be time for fundamental change in the way referees were recruited in Scotland, adding: "Perhaps we should now pay referees what they're worth to the game and make it a career rather than a part-time hobby."

Thompson told BBC Scotland that he has received messages of support from representatives of other clubs who are unhappy with the way their matches have been refereed.

"I think clubs are now fed up with the situation. It's about time it was brought out into the open and discussed properly," he said.

"Because it's easy to come out with a statement and say we made a mistake. But it doesn't help Dundee United and our place in the league. And it doesn't help financially either."

The loss to Rangers ended the Tannadice club's hopes of earning a Uefa Cup spot for next season.


see also
McCurry admits to Ibrox mistakes
12 May 08 |  Dundee Utd
Rangers 3-1 Dundee Utd
10 May 08 |  Scottish Premier


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