Gabby Agbonlahor has launched into a furious attack on referee Mike Dean following his decision to dismiss West Brom manager Slaven Bilic during his side’s defeat to Everton on Saturday.
The Albion boss approached the official to discuss Kieran Gibbs’ sending off at half-time in the 5-2 loss to the Toffees, but was shown an immediate red card for his protestations.
And Agbonlahor has expressed his sympathy for Bilic for having to deal with the often-difficult Dean.
Speaking on talkSPORT, he said: “Mike Dean is the most arrogant fool you will ever see, not just in refereeing but in life itself.
“I’ve never met anyone like him. You can ask any Premier League player, any ex-Premier League player, that’s played in a game with him as referee, he is the most arrogant person. You try and talk to him on the pitch, he tells you to get lost.
“When you see the West Brom manager go over to speak to him, I felt his pain. He’s frustrated with something that he doesn’t know about and he wants to talk to him – just speak to him like other refs do. Red card? What you sending him off for? He didn’t swear at you, he didn’t say anything bad.
“Mike Dean, he needs looking at. Have some respect for the managers, have some respect for the players on the pitch. He’s the worst and most arrogant referee out there.”
“Mike Dean is the most arrogant fool you will ever see. Not just refs, in life itself!”
“Ask any Premier League player!” 🤷♂️
“He needs looking at. I used to give him loads. He needs to respect managers.”@OfficialGA11 slams Mike Dean. 👀
— talkSPORT (@talkSPORT) September 20, 2020
This is a major attack from Agbonlahor, and the severity of his comments speaks volumes as to how Dean is viewed within the professional game.
We have to say, based on the footage we’ve seen from the weekend, it looked as if Bilic’s sending off was harsh.
He didn’t swear, he wasn’t abusive, and if the manager of a team doesn’t have the right to discuss a key decision with a referee, then who does?
Agbonlahor’s comments echo those of Micah Richards, who also accused Dean of being arrogant following Saturday’s incident.
For two ex-pros to make such similar and disparaging comments about the official, it really doesn’t reflect on him at all.
In other West Brom news, Bilic confirmed an injury blow to one of his players after the win against Harrogate.