Shamrock Rovers manager Stephen Bradley vented his frustration today about the absence of vanishing spray in the League of Ireland this season.
Shamrock Rovers were beaten 1-0 by Drogheda United on Monday night, their first loss in thirteen games. Bradley questioned why referees are not using vanishing foam, after Rovers had several free kicks blocked at Head in the Game Park. Despite losing to Kevin Doherty’s side, Rovers retained a seven-point lead at the top following Derry City’s defeat to Sligo Rovers.
Vanishing foam was introduced to the Premier and First Divisions in June 2016, to ensure that every wall was the required ten yards from the ball. Despite being used all last season, vanishing foam has not been used in either division so far this year.
Bradley bemoaned the situation but also stressed that it was not the reason they lost Monday’s match.
“When it’s there it’s black and white isn’t it?” said Bradley.
“It makes it crystal clear. Every team is going to take the yard, two yards, three yards. There was a free kick the other night and the wall was at best six yards away. We didn’t lose the game because of that, but it was really, really poor.”
He also offered his thoughts on if clubs should be taking the issue to the FAI. It’s understood that some players have also been annoyed with the situation in recent weeks and have questioned the professionalism of the league.
“We should be, it doesn’t make any sense that we’re not” he says.
“It makes things so much easier for referees, players and us staff. It makes it clearer, and it means you’re not having silly conversations with fourth officials or referees after.
“It’s just ridiculous. There’s two free kicks on the edge of their (Drogheda’s) box, and on one of them he’s six yards away, the wall. You’re telling the fourth official and you may as well be talking to the pole. The other night was unbelievable.”