Stoke manager Tony Pulis has launched a scathing attack on referees as he feels his side are being treated differently to other teams.
Pulis has complained to referees chief Mike Riley about the situation as he believes that officials are approaching games involving his team with judgmental thoughts on their style of play, citing his side’s position at the bottom of the fair play league as further evidence of this.
At the weekend, Stoke were stunned at the dismissal of Ryan Shotton for two seemingly harsh bookings, while Aston Villa’s Ciaran Clark escaped being given his marching orders after a poor challenge on Glenn Whelan in the 0-0 draw.
“I have spoken to Mike Riley this week. I find the whole situation disappointing week after week,” he told The Stoke Sentinel.
“Look at the incidents where our players are being booked or sent off, then compare them with similar incidents involving others that are going unpunished. There was the Clark one on Glenn at Villa.
“All we have ever asked is to be treated the same as everyone else, but there are preconceptions about us that are unfair.”
The subject of diving has also reared its head once more in recent weeks, after Santi Cazorla tumbled to win a penalty for Arsenal against West Brom and Pulis believes more can be done to clamp down on it, despite insisting only an elite group can have their say.
He added: “It won’t come from Tony Pulis or West Brom manager Steve Clarke. It will be interesting to see what Arsene Wenger and others will make of it because they are the ones who have power in football.
“You have to ban these players for three games and then they will soon stop diving.”