Wolverhampton midfielder Stephen Hunt says his team should bully referees more - Sports Illustrated

Stephen Hunt says Wolverhampton should bully referees more

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LONDON (Reuters) -- Wolverhampton Wanderers should take a leaf out of other team's books and try to con referees to get opposing players sent off, according to their midfielder Stephen Hunt.

Hunt, risking the wrath of the English FA, said Arsenal players encouraged referee Stuart Attwell to send off Wolves' Serbia midfielder Nenad Milijas during the 1-1 draw at the Emirates Stadium on Tuesday by crowding around him and goading him into showing his team mate a red card.

The Ireland international told reporters: "Everyone does it now. We should maybe be better at it than any other team. We don't do it and are punished because of it and maybe we should start doing it."

Milijas was sent off in the 75th minute of the Premier League match for a tackle on Mikel Arteta which Wolves appealed against. The FA dismissed the appeal on Thursday, handing him a three-match ban with immediate effect.

"Sometimes the reactions of the players are clever and they help the referee to get the player sent off," Hunt said.

"We have been done in the past - like with Woodgate. We should have surrounded the referee to get him sent off."

Hunt was referring to an incident when Wolves met Stoke City at Molineux two weeks ago and Stoke defender Jonathan Woodgate conceded a penalty after previously being booked, but was not sent off. He was then substituted by manager Tony Pulis and Stoke went on to win the match 2-1.

Players are banned by the FA from crowding the referee but the practice is still widespread.

Liverpool were fined 20,000 pounds ($30,900) on Wednesday for crowding referee Kevin Friend after he sent off Jay Spearing in a match against Fulham this month.

In another ruling on Thursday, the FA upheld an appeal from Wigan Athletic who claimed striker Connor Sammon was wrongfully dismissed against Manchester United on Saturday. Sammon's three-match ban was removed.