Melbourne Heart coach John Aloisi believes referee Alan Milliner lost control during the second half of his side’s 3-2 win over Brisbane.
Milliner showed three yellow cards and a red during a frenetic second half at AAMI Park on Sunday.
Aloisi said the decision to send off David Williams for a careless sliding challenge on Ivan Franjic in the 67th minute was the right one, but felt Milliner was inconsistent.
“He gives a yellow card and then he gives someone else a yellow card for no reason,” Aloisi told reporters afterwards.
“And he just starts to lose control and giving little, cheap fouls that weren’t really fouls – not consistent.
“The players don’t know whether they can jump for a header or go for a tackle because he’s going to give a free-kick against when in the first half he wasn’t … he’s not consistent.
“I’m not saying that that changed the game but it does play a part in it.”
Williams had opened the scoring in the 13th minute before Croatian forward Josip Tadic doubled the Heart’s lead despite appearing to be offside.
Fred made it 3-0 on 53 minutes and the Heart held on despite Besart Berisha netting a brace after Williams was given his marching orders.
Aloisi, who said he had yet to see a replay of Tadic’s goal, believes Williams deserved to see red.
“I saw the tackle. David Williams hasn’t got a bad bone in his body, but it was a red card because it was a clumsy striker’s tackle,” he said.
“He didn’t have to go to ground there, but he’s not malicious. He didn’t go to hurt the player, he just mistimed it and he had his foot up so I think it was a red card.”
Aloisi praised his men after they recorded back-to-back wins for the first time since February 2012.
The former Socceroo was happy the Heart took six points from their opening two games of the year, just as they had wanted to after losing to Wellington.
“When I spoke to the boys a week ago about the Newcastle game after the Wellington trip (we said) that our next two are important and we need to win both – must-win games – no matter how we play,” Aloisi said.
“We must win them and we did. That shows that the players are up for it as much as anyone else. “