The Vancouver Whitecaps have an entire offseason to stew on the way their 2014 season ended.
And while most teams can rue plays, moments and decisions in coulda/woulda/shoulda fashion, the ‘Caps have to recall how a referee’s controversial-at-best decision to award FC Dallas a late penalty deprived them of their chance to move on in the MLS playoffs.
[ WATCH: The controversial PK call ]
Inside the 18 with under 10 minutes to play in regulation, Kendall Waston’s arm came into contact with a bounding throw-in from FC Dallas and referee Mark Geiger awarded a penalty kick that Michel converted for the hosts. This much is undebatable.
Everything else, however, is ready for discussion. Early returns on our poll have 66 percent of voters saying it shouldn’t have been a PK.
“I think it’s better that I don’t comment on that because I’ll get myself in trouble,” Robinson told Vancouver’s TSN radio when asked about the call.
“Second half, there was only one team going to win it, and unfortunately it was taken out of our hands.”
“It was such a soft call,” [Vancouver goalkeeper David] Ousted said, according to a report by Marc Weber of The Province. “It does touch his arm. It just bounces off. But I don’t think the big man can cut off his arm. That he [Geiger] calls that, in a game of this magnitude, I think is poor.”
Geiger spoke with a pool reporter following the match and defended his call, saying it’s one he would make at any point in the match.
Where I was raised, we’ve lived with the fact that even if Brett Hull’s goal to win the Stanley Cup Final was overturned, the Buffalo Sabres still would’ve had to score the next goal and win Game Seven. Plus, the rule was fairly dubious, too. But in this case, I feel for Vancouver fans times 10. Whether or not the rule was correctly enforced, that is an absolutely horrific and gut-punching way to lose a game… let alone a season.
Robinson later said, “I’ve got 30 and 34-year-olds in my locker room in tears because we feel it’s been unfairly taken away from us, but we have to deal with it, we have to get on with it. We’ll freshen up and we’ll get back to work.”