Newcastle United fans have a right to be livid about the automatic red card that somehow didn't appear when David Luiz flipped Demba Ba like a pancake with nothing but air and Batman between them and the net in the fourth minute of what turned into a 3-0 Chelsea victory Saturday. I'm exercising that right.
But I'm more livid about two of Newcastle's biggest matches ever being ruined in consecutive weeks by inexplicable, result-altering referee decisions.
It's possible both matches, in the end, at least roughly fit the scores. The shame is that there has to be a question about it. The shame is that the points earned - including Newcastle's last week - are permanently tainted. The shame is that, instead of scintillating performances on one side or the other, the legacy of what should've been two forever-memorable matches won't involve the players at all. We've been robbed of more than results. We've been robbed of history.
Referee Mike Dean has reportedly confessed to making an error on the unshown red. I would call that a form of cattle excrement. The so-called admission obviously is meant to obscure something worse: cowardice. The call and the offending club were simply too big for the official. And we see that over and over, week after week - big teams evading big calls from small refs.
In a league as revered as England's, that's a travesty. I don't know how officials are chosen or groomed or evaluated in the Premier League. I do know this: It has to be better. Fans who invest so much of themselves deserve more. A lot more. Somebody, please. Do something.