Not a good day for whistler and his linesmen

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The Benchman takes issues with the officials against Partrick

WILLIE COLLUM: Referee Willie Collum was not a popular chappie around Falkirk last Saturday. Some of the decisions were bizarre to say the least. The assembled press pack were baffled by many of them. Kieran Duffie’s red card? A yellow at best. The Cairney penalty? A possible booking for the Jags player for “simulation”. The Sun gave him three out of 10 and some at the game thought that was maybe over-generous.

FLAGGING TOO OFTEN: The far-side linesman (I refuse to call them assistants - they don’t assist) flagged Farid offside twice in quick succession. We were right in line with the Bairns striker and he was well onside when the ball was played. Incidentally, why was he waving a yellow and red flag? A wee bit partisan?

GROWING UP-FAST: The progress shown by the team this season has been spectacular. Not just in terms of football ability, but also in determination, fighting spirit and commitment. I’ve never known so many Falkirk fans who are totally supportive of the efforts of their team. Realism rules OK?

SHOULD HAVE GONE TO SPECSAVERS:What a week-end for controversial decisions. The failure by Martin Atkinson and his linesman to spot that QPR goal by Clint Hill was unbelievable. The poor linesman was spotted mouthing “I didn’t see it. There were two players in my way!” That surely didn’t wash when he missed a blatant off-side when Cisse scored. Thank goodness there weren’t any bad decisions at The Falkirk Stadium last Saturday. Were there?

TEASER: Which former Falkirk player was Jim Leishman’s assistant when they won successive promotions from the Second to First Division as Champions in their centenary season of 1985/86 and then to the Scottish Premier Division after finishing as second to Morton in 1986/87.

THEY’RE ALL OUT OF STEP BUT OOR JOCK: What does it take to get the decision-makers to see sense? The game is dying on its feet. Empty seats everywhere. The crowd at Tynecastle for the Hearts v St Mirren cup-tie was a mere 8859. Fans surveys, opinion polls and other questionnaires all say the same thing- we need a bigger top tier. No, no, thrice no say the Wise Men. It’s our game. Oh no it’s not. Time will tell them whose game it is.

MYSTERY PIC: Can you name this former Falkirk player?

BENCHMARKS: Match rating: 8 Team performance: 8 Opposition: 8 Referee: Willie Collum (as they say in cricket circles- he didn’t trouble the scorer) Best Bairn: Michael McGovern