Ollie Yates was correct not to award Bristol Rovers a penalty against Sunderland for an incident in the second half on Saturday, according to Keith Hackett.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the ex-Premier League and FIFA official praised Yates’ positioning and positive decision making when Luke O’Nein and Brandon Hanlan came together in the box.

A bouncing ball was put into the penalty area and O’Nein clashed with Hanlan when he won a header to clear the ball.


The Rovers players appealed for a penalty and afterwards manager Joey Barton described the incident as a “stonewall penalty”.

He added, as relayed by Bristol Live: “My mind boggles with the officials at the minute, it feels like there’s an agenda somewhere and we can’t have had 10 bad officials at the level we’ve had.”

However, Hackett has insisted Barton has no reason to complain.

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He told Football Insider correspondent Connor Whitley: “I think the referee’s got that one spot on.

“He’s gone in to head the ball, the number nine is looking for the contact. There’s no way that’s a penalty kick.

“The referee’s got it spot on. The point I would make is the referee was in a great position, he was positive in his decision and signal. It’s a good piece of refereeing.”

Barton felt the decision cost his side a point as Sunderland ran out 1-0 winners and recorded a seventh win in 10 games.

They now sit in third in League One, three points off the top with two games in hand over leaders Hull City.

In other news, a finance expert has revealed what the new FFP rules will mean for Sunderland.