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Artell:"I Wanted A Delay To See If The Pitch Would Dry But The Ref Made His Call"

21 February 2022

David Artell says that it was frustrating to have Saturday’s home game with Portsmouth postponed due to a waterlogged pitch at Gresty Road, but the Crewe Alexandra manager said that the referee ‘made his decision and it had to be accepted.’

The referee elected to postpone the fixture before 2pm due to top water on the pitch and the referee did not want to endanger the players if they lost control in a sliding tackle.

Despite both clubs wanting to delay a decision, to see if the pitch would dry out ahead of 3pm, the only opinion that mattered on the day was the one of the referees and Artell appreciates that he had a tough call to make.

Artell told “It was a frustrating Saturday afternoon and I didn’t talk after the game because we quickly altered our plans and went to train at Reaseheath instead in readiness for Oxford.

“It was what it was. The referee made the decision and that was it. I understood that he had 1,500 Portsmouth fans wanting to come into the Stadium. The fact that we also had 4,000 Crewe fans travelling seemed irrelevant but that is another story.

“I wanted him to delay it for half an hour because we know our pitch. We knew it would be playable before kick off if the forecast was correct and that is what happened, but in fairness to the referee he doesn’t know our pitch and had a judgement call to make.

“The referee didn’t want to make that delay and the decision was made and we had to accept that.”  

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