Referee Neil Swarbrick has come out and defended his decision saying it wasn’t made by him. Swarbrick, the veteran official which was chosen to referee the South Coast derby said that when he went across to speak to the linesman, who called the goal offside, he had the match director instructing him in the ear. He said that he was told “Give the goal, give the goal, it needs to be a win, give it”. He then passed the message on to the linesman, and then blew his whistle, and gestured the goal allowed, as Southampton fans became ecstatic with joy. Swarbrick has made it clear that he doesn’t feel responsible, as it wasn’t his decision, but it will be interesting to hear if the match director will make a comment on what is surely a breach of fair play football.
Portsmouth went on to equalise after a last minute screamer from David Norris, sending Portsmouth fans home with a well deserved point.