"Scandalous": Manchester United's Ashley Young appears to be brought down by Tottenham's goalkeeper Hugo Lloris but no penalty was given. Photo: Jon Super
David Moyes has labelled a controversial decision by World Cup final referee Howard Webb as "scandalous" following his team's 2-1 home defeat by Tottenham Hotspur.
The Manchester United manager was incensed by a late decision not to award United a penalty kick when Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris challenged home winger Ashley Young and questioned whether England's most respected official should be operating in the Premier League.
Despite television pundits widely backing Webb's decision not to give United the penalty, an award that would surely also have led to the goalkeeper's dismissal, Moyes was adamant that the 42-year-old Yorkshireman should be dealt with by the PGMO, the body who appoint match officials.
Furious: Manchester United manager David Moyes runs onto the pitch as he appeals in vain for a penalty. Photo: NIGEL RODDIS
"It was a scandal," fumed Moyes. "It's reckless, it's late, it's in the penalty box, I don't know what else you can say.
"If you follow through on a player anywhere else on the pitch, foot-high, it's a sending off and a penalty kick. Ashley Young gets the ball and he follows through. It's an incredible decision that didn't go our way. It's one of the worst I've seen.
"You only hope the people who put the referees in there look to see if the referees are doing as well as they can. But they keep picking them don't they? The people who employ referees are going to have to look at that."
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Chelsea's Gary Cahill (L) is challenged by Southampton's Rickie Lambert during their English Premier League soccer match at St Mary's stadium in Southampton. Photo: STEFAN WERMUTH
The United manager's angry mood was not helped by Webb showing a yellow card to United youngster Adnan Januzaj for "simulation" in the second half.
It is not the first time this season the talented winger has been punished for diving but, on this occasion, Moyes believed his player was more sinned against than sinning.
"It was a terrible decision," added Moyes. "Adnan gets bumped, the boy tried to nudge him off the ball. That was a terrible decision."
United have now dropped 26 points in the current campaign, one more than they squandered all of last season in winning the title in Alex Ferguson's farewell term.
More alarmingly, they now face the real prospect of becoming only the second defending Premier League champions in history to finish outside the top three the following year.