Bristol City manager Nigel Pearson threatens to quit football due to the standard of refereeing

Nigel Pearson and Nathan Jones spoke on the game’s main talking points following the Robins’ 2-0 win on Tuesday night.

Nigel Pearson has suggested that he may walk away from football due to incompetent refereeing standards.

In comments made to Sky Sports following Bristol City’s 2-0 win over Luton Town, the Robins boss said that he has thought both last year and this about leaving the game because of the officiating that the 58-year-old says is at an “all-time low”.

Pearson had no complaints with Mark Sykes’ 67th-minute red card issued by referee Lee Doughty for a two-footed lunge, as the South West outfit completed their first win of the season, but he said that former City playmaker Luke Freeman should also have been sent from the game for his reaction to Sykes’ tackle.

And that follows several questionable decisions meted out in Bristol City games this season, particularly the penalty awarded at Hull City in the opening match of the campaign, as Kal Naismith was penalised for a foul.

Pearson went on to explain that his job has been under pressure of late to get results and that refereeing decisions have wide bearing.

In support, he also revealed that the PGMOL - the refereeing governing body - have written to Bristol City to apologise for Dean Whitestone’s performance at the MKM Stadium. A letter arrived last Saturday saying that Bristol City should have had two penalties at Hull City, and the home side none, upon review by the PGMOL.

“In the modern game, I’ve got no complaints about Sykesy but what I do have a complaint about is the way their player wasn’t dealt with in the same way,” Pearson told Sky Sports News.

“I’ve got to be honest with you, I thought about it last year, and I’ve thought about it again this year and that is basically to pack up being involved in the sport.

“And that is not because how shallow the modern game is and how some of the aspects of the modern game irritate me but the standard of officiating, as far as I’m concerned, is at an all-time low.”

Bristol City are off and running for the season after a solid 2-0 win over Luton, with the result lifting the West Country outfit up to 14th in the nascent league table.

First-half goals from Nahki Wells and Tommy Conway did the business on Tuesday evening and Pearson will have been cheered by the performance his side showed at Ashton Gate.

“We’ve done okay,” said Pearson, playing down his side’s fine display, though he did concede that his team’s attacking play had been good.

“We took the game to them as we’ve tried to do in every game this season”.

As for the other side of the coin; Nathan Jones on the red card? “It’s a clear red, it’s a bad challenge. We reacted to it and gave the referee another decision to make.”

“I thought they [Bristol City] had more energy than us,” he conceded. Jones was not wrong on that.

“A real poor performance in the first half,” added the Luton manager. “I probably picked the wrong team to be honest,” he explained, bemoaning his side’s defending.

From the most clean sheets last season to now no wins in their first four Championship games, the Hatters were outplayed for much of Tuesday evening. Hello Kal Naismith, now making a difference over the west side of the country, with a first clean sheet for Pearson and co.