The week 26 of the Globacom Premier League encounter between Bayelsa United and Rangers F.C of Enugu at the Samson Siasia Stadium in Yenegoa on Sunday is better seen than imagined and much better described as the worstÂ officiating ever witnessed in soccer history.
A Press Statement by Rangers media manager, Foster Chime described centre Referee Shamang Barnabas from Kaduna referee council as a kill Joy and an epitome of bizarre specie of few of the men in black. It is most unfortunate that when the NFF, NPL and NRA are doing everything possible to improve our local league to international level, few uncowed and corrupt referees are hell bent on tarnishing the good image of the majority of the referees because of greed.
Rangers officials and players attributed the teamâ€™s 1-0 loss to Bayelsa United in Yenegoa on Sunday to daylight robbery and biased officiating by centre Referee Shamang Barnabas from Kaduna.
Right from the blast of the whistle Referee Barnabas kept no one in doubt as to his ulterior motive which was to ensure that the home side won by hook or crook to the detriment of the credibility of the league and the organizersâ€™ vision of free and fair play.
The spate of bad and uncoordinated officiating by Referee Barnabas was so obvious that even the home crowd started jeering at him for every false call he made.
This attitudeÂ of BarnabasÂ resulted in his issuing Rangers players about seven yellow cards and only one to Bayelsa throughout theÂ duration of the game.
Barnabas sealed the deal when with few minutes to the end of the game, a Bayelsa player handled the ball inside Rangers eighteen yard box during a goal mouth scramble but rather than stop the game for the offence and heeding the call of one of his assistants, Ibrahim Yusuf who raised his flag,Â MrÂ Barnabas ignored it.
He also ignored theÂ protests by Rangers players who had relaxed with the hope that the referee will stop the game but only to allow a player shoot the ball into the net for Bayelsaâ€™sÂ lone goal .