Red Bulls’ Petke fined by MLS, when will coaches learn?

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This wasn’t a surprise.

New York Red Bulls head coach Mike Petke was today handed a fine by the MLS Disciplinary Committee, after New York’s 2-2 tie with Columbus last Sunday.

Petke, who is certainly no stranger to speaking his mind, hit out after he felt Columbus were handed a soft penalty kick in the 2-2 tie at Red Bull Arena.

Cue a fine, albeit a nominal one. However, what is Petke gaining from shouting off about the ref? Not much, but at least he says what he thinks.

A refreshing attitude for a Major League Soccer coach but one that doesn’t sit too kindly with the league ant the new Professional Referees Organization (PRO) headed by former EPL referee Peter Walton.

Petke, a fiery New Yorker in his playing days too, predicted a fine would be coming his way after these comments.

I have my checkbook out and I’m ready for MLS to fine me because it’s not good enough, the referees, it’s not good enough. I watched the replay of the penalty of what I already knew to be not a penalty and it backed it up. [Meram] mis-hits the ball, mis-hits it, and then there’s contact from the side. In my estimation, [the referee is] a guy who’s probably getting ready for the Memorial Day weekend who wants to be a part of the show. That’s what it is to me. I could care less what the league fines me or what they say. Those decisions, those type of things, cost jobs.

So was Petke justified to mouth off about the standard of officiating?

He has a point, below is the incident involving Meram and Kosuke Kimura, where the Crew player appears to miss the ball and then there is a coming together in the box.

What do you think?

Either way, Petke and Major League Soccer’s other coaches should know by now that the MLS Disciplinary Committee is here to stay.

Shouting out and talking about officials will get them nowhere. But it does raise the point of the officiating in the league. Yes, it has got better over the years. But with plenty of controversial plays this season, are MLS refs getting them right?

Referring is a tough job. Hence MLSsoccer.com’s recent “Referee Week” campaign which heaped praise on the task officials have to perform out there in the heat of the action.

I appreciate Petke’s passion for the game and he can rightly speak out when feeling unjust. But every time MLS managers talk about refs, the league will hit them with a fine.

Is that a hit worth taking? For Petke, yes. But it won’t get you very far apart from letting off some steam. Oh yeah, and feeling a little lighter in the wallet.