Thorns request red card review


By Kristen Gehrke

Late Monday afternoon, the Portland Thorns formally requested a review of goalkeeper Nadine Angerer’s red card from Saturday’s match against the New York Flash.

A misplayed pass from defender Nikki Marshall forced Angerer to come out to challenge WNY forward Samantha Kerr. Kerr hit the turf, WNY was awarded a penalty and Angerer was sent off by referee Juliana Duncan. There has been much speculation as to whether Angerer made contact with Kerr.

“Nadine didn’t touch her,” Thorns coach Paul Riley said in the post-match press conference. “You can see from the tape she didn’t touch her. The referee went to the linesman. I don’t know if the fourth official called it, somebody else called it because she wasn’t going to give it.”

An NWSL spokesperson confirmed the request for a review had been made. NWSL currently has a review process in place, but does not have a written policy regarding appeals. According to league communications director Patrick Donnelly, a review “will not result in overturning the official decision in the record of the match.”


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  1. This was one of the worst calls I’ve ever seen in soccer. That includes rec soccer. Hard to believe this decision came from “professional” refs. Above and beyond this terrible call it seemed like the Thorns were given the short end of the stick by Duncan all night. No doubt refs are in short supply and it’s a thankless job but there has to be some form of accountability here somewhere by the refs and PRO. It’s like we’re held hostage by bad refereeing.

    Gotta wonder what the rest of the match would have been like without this call. I have to believe this broke the Thorns trust in the game and contributed to their lackluster play the rest of the match.

    • Kristen Gehrke on

      Yeah, I also asked PRO for clarification as to why Duncan was here rather than Timon Berry, who was shown on the PRO site as having been assigned to this game. Here’s the response I got:

      Christina Unkel (FIFA Referee) was originally assigned to the match, but had to be taken off to do her FIFA fitness test on 6/7 in North Carolina to meet the FIFA deadline for Youth Olympics pre-testing.

      Timon Berry was then assigned, but was then needed for a 6/11 match in Boston, MA due to a somewhat unusual combination of lack of available NWSL referees and avoiding having referees who were available see the Boston & Washington teams in consecutive matches.

      Because 6/7 and 6/11 were so close together and involved cross-country travel, it was neither in Timon’s nor the game’s best interest. Juliana was the most senior referee available who didn’t see either team (Portland or WNY) in their previous respective matches or already have a mid-week game. She was assigned on 5/28.

      So, yes, there does appear to be a shortage of qualified officials.

  2. Is she going to play on 21 June vs the Spirit? I mean she misses next match but does the match on 15 June count as the match she misses? Thanks in advance!

    • Kristen Gehrke on

      I’m still trying to get clarification there. I’ll post when (if) I hear anything more.

  3. I’m a Flash fan, but that was a terrible call. Between bad calls like this and missed calls, the referees have been an embarrassment this season. Is there remedial referee school??