Western Sydney Wanderers head coach Tony Popovic.
Western Sydney Wanderers head coach Tony Popovic. BEN MACMAHON

Popovic cops fine for comments on referee

FOOTBALL: Football Australia has continued its crackdown on coaches criticising referees by fining Western Sydney Wanderers coach Tony Popovic $3000 for slamming referee Jarred Gillett.

A furious Popovic said in his post-match interview Gillett missed a penalty in his side's round-six 3-0 loss to Melbourne Victory after Jason Geria appeared to foul Jumpei Kusukami in the 18-yard box.

Replays showed the young fullback missed the ball and fouled the Japanese attacker.

"If that's not a penalty, they should book him for diving,” Popovic said on Fox Sports.

Popovic also pointed to the club's record with Gillett in the middle - just one win in 11 games - suggesting "maybe it's just a coincidence”.

Head of the A-League Greg O'Rourke said any comments "direct or implied that reflect on the integrity of a referee are unacceptable”.

"It is important that all players and coaches consider their words carefully when offering their thoughts post-match,” he said.

"Respect towards match officials is not a nice thing to have, it is a fundamental of our game required at every level.”

Popovic has seven business days to appeal.

He was the second A-League coach to be fined this season for criticising referees, with Kevin Muscat having been forced to pay $5000 in October for his comments regarding Shaun Evans after the Melbourne Victory bowed out of the FFA Cup.

Last ditch Butler Street rally

Last ditch Butler Street rally

Rally to protest plans for Butler Street

Koala ko-ordinator fund

Koala ko-ordinator fund

Money for koalas from Labor