HIBERNIAN boss Lee Johnson has fumed at Stevie McClean’s officiating during their 3-1 defeat at Celtic park on Saturday afternoon.
The Hit’s boss believed his team should NOT have been reduced to ten men during the first half and that CCV should not have got a penalty for the challenge in the box during the second half.
Celtic went 1-0 down due to VAR intervening and penalising Carl Starfelt for jersey pulling in the box.
However, Celtic kept going and in the second half made sure they got the win in the end through goals from Jota, Oh and Haksabanovic.
Johnson was in no mood after the game and believe his team have been done a disservice by McClean.
Speaking to Clyde 1 the Hibs boss ranted: “You have to point fingers at the referee’s performance. You have to. How on earth can that be a sending off? Physically, I thought it was a foul against Elie Youan. The centre-half pulls and pushes him, then by the time Youan connects with his head he’s blooming about five foot two. He’s got his back to goal, he doesn’t know where he is and he’s been out-muscled. Maybe a foul, maybe not a foul. It’s definitely not a yellow card.
“This is the problem with VAR because there’s a grey area and it has to be clear and obvious for them to turn it around. He’s just had a really poor performance, it just bugs me because clubs like us we need all teams on point and today we were and they weren’t.
“I think both penalties are not a penalty because if that’s the case I want to see a penalty for almost every box entry. He was keen to look for any contact. That’s got to be consistent. His position was very hunched and looking for any sort of contact. There’s got to be consistency across the league on stuff like that. You’d be giving 100 penalties every matchday across the Scottish leagues if both of those penalties are indeed penalties.”
Johnson’s team came to Celtic Park to frustrate and hope for a lucky break. They got that break with the penalty decision but they couldn’t hold on. They invited pressure on themselves time and time again and it finally told.
It was an admirable defensive performance from the Hibs side, but they found out today how hard it is to keep Celtic out for 90 minutes.
Ange has a squad ready and able to do the business. The Australian’s second half subs were inspired and made sure the bhoys kept their nine point lead.