FURIOUS Nuno Espirito Santo confronted referee Lee Mason and told him he does not want to see him anywhere near a Wolves game ever again.
Molineux chief Nuno said this was not the first time he had taken issue with Mason’s officiating and claimed the Bolton ref “does not have the quality” to handle top-flight games.
Nuno Espirito Santo launched a blistering attack on Lee Mason after Wolves’ 2-1 defeat to Burnley[/caption]
Nuno Espirito Santos has claimed Lee Mason isn’t fit to referee in the Premier League[/caption]
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The Portuguese boss fumed: “I just don’t want to see him any more, I told him I hope he does not whistle a game of ours again.
“The referee did not have the quality for a Premier League game, this is a problem we know we had with Lee Mason before.
“He cannot control the players, the players are constantly arguing. The other referees let the game flow.
“It’s not about the crucial mistake or decisions, it’s how he handles the game. The players get nervous, he whistles from the noises from the players.
“We are talking about the best competition but he does not have the quality to whistle the game.”
That rant overshadowed a dominant display by Burnley, who leapt out of the drop zone into 16th thanks to goals from Ashley Barnes and Chris Wood.
Fabio Silva won and scored an 89th-minute penalty — conceded by Burnley sub Josh Benson before he had even touched the ball — to give Wolves a lifeline but justice was done as the hosts held on for the win.
The Clarets have taken 12 points from seven games, with the annual hiding at Manchester City the only blot on their recent record, which now finds them just a point behind Arsenal with a game in hand.
Understandably, Burnley boss Sean Dyche had no problem with Mason’s refereeing, though he was disappointed VAR did not punish Joao Moutinho after he appeared to kick out at Josh Brownhill.
Dyche said: “In football now, every touch is a foul and yet their lad stamps on ours and there is no foul. How that is not a sending off I don’t know.
“I’ve no problems with the refs, it is really difficult now. The three most difficult jobs are the managers and the referee. I don’t think any game is easy for referees at the moment.”
Barnes’ firm downward header after 35 minutes was his first goal in 13 months and the amount of time he held his arms aloft in celebration showed what a relief it was.
To be fair, Barnes did miss the second half of last season having undergone a hernia operation. But the striker has had plenty of chances to open his account since returning.
Another of those went begging eight minutes before Barnes finally registered a goal in 2020.
Premier League fixtures in December
Friday 4 December
20:00 Aston Villa v Newcastle Utd (Sky Sports)
Saturday 5 December
12:30 Burnley v Everton (BT Sport)
15:00 Man City v Fulham (BT Sport)
17:30 West Ham v Man Utd (Sky Sports)
20:00 Chelsea v Leeds Utd (Sky Sports)
Sunday 6 December
12:00 West Brom v Crystal Palace (Sky Sports)
14:15 Sheffield Utd v Leicester City (Sky Sports)
16:30 Spurs v Arsenal (Sky Sports)
19:15 Liverpool v Wolves (Amazon Prime Video)
Monday 7 December
20:00 Brighton v Southampton (Sky Sports)
Friday 11 December
20:00 Leeds Utd v West Ham (Sky Sports)
Saturday 12 December
12:30 Wolves v Aston Villa (BT Sport)
15:00 Newcastle Utd v West Brom (Sky Sports)
17:30 Man Utd v Man City (Sky Sports)
20:00 Everton v Chelsea (BT Sport)
Sunday 13 December
12:00 Southampton v Sheff Utd (Sky Sports)
14:15 Crystal Palace v Spurs (Sky Sports)
16:30 Fulham v Liverpool (Sky Sports)
19:15 Arsenal v Burnley (Sky Sports)
19:15 Leicester City v Brighton (Amazon Prime Video)
Tuesday 15 December
18:00 Wolves v Chelsea (Amazon Prime Video)
20:00 Man City v West Brom (Amazon Prime Video)
Wednesday 16 December
18:00 Arsenal v Southampton (Amazon Prime Video)
18:00 Leeds Utd v Newcastle Utd (Amazon Prime Video)
18:00 Leicester City v Everton (Amazon Prime Video)
20:00 Fulham v Brighton (Amazon Prime Video)
20:00 Liverpool v Spurs (Amazon Prime Video)
20:00 West Ham v Crystal Palace (Amazon Prime Video)
Thursday 17 December
18:00 Aston Villa v Burnley (Amazon Prime Video)
20:00 Sheffield Utd v Man Utd (Amazon Prime Video)
Saturday 19 December
12:30 Crystal Palace v Liverpool (BT Sport)
15:00 Southampton v Man City (Amazon Prime Video)
17:30 Everton v Arsenal (Sky Sports)
20:00 Newcastle Utd v Fulham (Sky Sports)
Sunday 20 December
12:00 Brighton v Sheffield Utd (Sky Sports)
14:15 Spurs v Leicester City (Sky Sports)
16:30 Man Utd v Leeds Utd (Sky Sports)
19:15 West Brom v Aston Villa (BT Sport)
Monday 21 December
17:30 Burnley v Wolves (Sky Sports)
20:00 Chelsea v West Ham (Sky Sports)
Saturday 26 December
12:30 Leicester City v Man Utd (BT Sport)
15:00 Aston Villa v Crystal Palace (BBC)
15:00 Fulham v Southampton (Sky Sports)
17:30 Arsenal v Chelsea (Sky Sports)
20:00 Man City v Newcastle Utd (BT Sport)
20:00 Sheffield Utd v Everton (BT Sport)
Sunday 27 December
12:00 Leeds Utd v Burnley (Sky Sports)
14:15 West Ham v Brighton (Sky Sports)
16:30 Liverpool v West Brom (Sky Sports)
19:15 Wolves v Spurs (Sky Sports)
Monday 28 December
15:00 Crystal Palace v Leicester City (Amazon Prime Video)
17:30 Chelsea v Aston Villa (Amazon Prime Video)
20:00 Everton v Man City (Amazon Prime Video)
Tuesday 29 December
18:00 Brighton v Arsenal (Amazon Prime Video)
18:00 Burnley v Sheffield Utd (Amazon Prime Video)
18:00 Southampton v West Ham (Amazon Prime Video)
18:00 West Brom v Leeds Utd (Amazon Prime Video)
20:00 Man Utd v Wolves (Amazon Prime Video)
Wednesday 30 December
18:00 Spurs v Fulham (Amazon Prime Video)
20:00 Newcastle Utd v Liverpool (Amazon Prime Video)
He shot straight at Rui Patricio’s legs after Nick Pope’s long clearance put him through one on one with the Wolves keeper. But it did not take Barnes long to justify Dyche’s decision to start him, replacing Jay Rodriguez in the only change from the 0-0 at Aston Villa last Thursday.
And a disappointing Wolves side never looked like ruining the striker’s big night.
It was hard to believe Nuno’s side had beaten Chelsea and Arsenal within the last month.
Brownhill clipped the Wolves bar with a 25-yard thunderbolt just before Wood doubled the home team’s lead.
Ashley Westwood’s free-kick was headed back across the box by Ben Mee and, after a mad scramble, the ball fell kindly for Wood, who smashed it home.
It was the first time Burnley had scored two at Turf Moor since February but they will be disappointed not to have added to it, Wood and Barnes both having further chances.
Wolves finally threatened as Ruben Neves’ thunderous volley brought a smart save from Pope, before Silva’s penalty gave them false hope.