BURNLEY, England (Reuters) - Burnley manager Sean Dyche said bigger clubs seem to get more favourable refereeing decisions than smaller ones after his side lost 1-0 to an added-time penalty for Arsenal on Sunday.
It was the third straight game between the teams in which an injury-time decision has favoured Arsenal and saw the visitors to move up to fourth, with Burnley staying seventh.
“There is a lot of me inside that is raging a lot. It was highly unlikely it was not going to get given on a day like today, that’s all I will say,” Dyche said after Alexis Sanchez scored from the spot in the Premier League clash.
“I think you can all make your conclusions from that, working backwards,” he added.
Referee Lee Mason spotted James Tarkowski’s push in the back on Aaron Ramsey but Burnley fans were unhappy with the Welshman’s dramatic fall.
“It’s a tough one, it probably is a penalty, but my point is it was never not going to be given on today’s performance, I can assure you,” said Dyche, in apparent reference to previous decisions in the match.
Asked why it may be that bigger clubs get more favourable decisions from referees, Dyche added: “I don’t know. People have been talking about this way before my years as a manager. The bigger clubs seem to get the decisions.
“I’m not sure it’s fact, I’m not sure anyone has ‘statted’ it, but for years managers have been promoting this thought that they do,” he said.
“I am not saying it is anything to do with that today, it is one that probably gets given, but I have seen them not given,” added the Burnley boss.
Asked about the coincidence of such incidents in matches with Arsenal he said: “We had one there (at The Emirates last season) as well. We look forward to going there and getting another one to make it four. People will start putting money on that,” said Dyche.
“Its football, sometimes you can’t fathom it out, amazing things happen in football, good and bad, I don’t think there is any particular reason,” he said, adding that he was pleased with his seventh-placed team’s performance.
“All I know is that we are continuing to improve, I feel, and there were good signs of that today. That is the over-riding thing, but there is obvious disappointment not to get something out of the game.”
Reporting by Simon Evans; editing by Ken Ferris