Holt: "Rules are rules, I'm not going to argue with the ref"

Falkirk interim manager Gary Holt says the decision to disallow Sean Kelly’s 90th minute equaliser didn’t influence how they lost the game in Saturday’s 2-1 defeat at home to Montrose.

Monday, 3rd May 2021, 10:21 am
Falkirk fullback Scott Mercer questions the decision by referee Steven Kirkland to disallow Sean Kelly's 90th minute goal in their 2-1 defeat to Montrose last Saturday

The defender curled in a free kick from the edge of the box in the dying second of the game and though he had earned the point which guaranteed the Bairns spot in the play-offs, but referee Steven Kirkland ruled that Aidan Keena was encroaching on the Montrose wall and the goal did not stand.

It was a bitterly disappointing decision but Holt said after the match that one decision didn’t impact how the game was won and lost.

"I'm led to believe that Aidan Keena encroached on the wall, within that distance it's not allowed.

"Rules are rules, I'm not going to argue with the referee, he made his mind up and the game goes on.

"It's one of those things, yes it's disappointing but the game should have been done and dusted by then.

"They never caused us too many problems but we gifted them two soft goals which will hurt any team when you're not taking the chances at the other end.

"I'm not annoyed, it's part of the game the things the referee says, should we have had two penalties in the first half? Yes, but the referee has a hard enough job without me having a go at him.

"That doesn't influence how you lose or win the game but it's a hard one because the things we didn't do well on Thursday we did better but still lost the game."

Falkirk head to Airdrieonians on Tuesday night where a point should be enough to guarantee fourth spot (barring Montrose beating Cove Rangers by seven goals) and a win by two or more goals will see them jump above the Diamonds to finish third.

A fourth place finish would mean they face the Championships ninth place club in the play of semi finals, now confirmed as Greenock Morton, while finishing third would mean facing Cove Rangers in the semi-finals who will finish second if Falkirk beat Airdrie.

"It's another tough game for us,” said Holt.

"We'll patch them up and see what we can get out of them on Sunday and Monday because it's another game in our hands and hopefully we can get the rub of the green.

"I don't want to be in League 1, the clubs don't, the fans don't and the players don't but you have to win games of football to get out of it.

"At the moment, with the squad we have and the injuries we have it's harsh, we have a lot of young boys getting experience they probably didn't think they would get so early and we just have to dust ourselves down in time for Tuesday.”

The game at the Excelsior Stadium kicks off at 7:00pm as does the Montrose match with the Gable Endies welcoming League 1 champions Partick Thistle to Links par for their final match,