Alan Biggs: Poor start led to Hillsborough ref’s yellow fever

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Jacques Maghoma became a FIFTH Sheffield Wednesday player cautioned at Hillsborough last weekend – in the aftermath to what was essentially a good, cleanly fought game. And today Keith Hackett joins the chorus of disapproval for referee Graham Salisbury despite the fact that the official’s crime sheet – now rising to eight yellow cards across both teams – was supported by live TV pundits.

Winger Maghoma, it turns out, was booked for dissent after the final whistle as the teams came off.

It was a confusing experience because, from a naked eye view and no monitor within range, I criticised Salisbury’s judgment on talkSport. Back came Twitter replies from the TV audience saying the referee was technically correct.

But it was really about the yardstick Salisbury set himself by booking Jose Semedo for an early challenge that was clumsy at worst. Former referees’ chief Hackett may be a Wednesday fan, but he has never let that interfere with his judgment down the years.

Hackett, now front man for the website you-are-the-ref.com, told me: “What happened was that the referee set himself up with a cheap caution. It was unnecessary in such a game.”