New England Soccer Today

Jones Apologizes For Outburst

Photo credit: Chris Aduama/

Photo credit: Chris Aduama/

Jermaine Jones has said it before, and he said it again following Wednesday’s 2-1 knockout round loss to DC: he hates to lose. But he admits that’s no excuse for charging referee Mark Geiger in the waning moments of the match.

After Geiger failed to award the Revolution with a penalty for a ball that Sean Franklin handled inside his own 18 during second half stoppage time, Jones aggressively confronted him about it, and was red carded as a result.

“For what happened, I would say I’m sorry – it cannot happen, but it happened,” Jones told the media after the match. “People who know me, they know I’m not a good loser, and in that moment, I was really upset.”

To Jones, it wasn’t so much the missed call – replays of the incident showed that Franklin did indeed handle the ball – that he took particular issue with. Rather, it was what he felt was inconsistency on the part of Geiger.

Fifteen minutes prior to the play in question, Geiger awarded a penalty to DC after a Fabian Espindola pass hit Scott Caldwell on the arm while he was stationed inside the 18. In Jones’ view, the plays were identical, but the decisions were not.

“It’s the same kind of handball,” Jones said, “and I got to him, and I don’t like how he handled it. I think everybody can see (Franklin’s handball) was 100 percent a penalty. I would not go crazy if I wasn’t 100 percent sure that it was a penalty”

The Revolution midfielder wasn’t the only one upset with the man in the middle.

“It’s frustrating,” Revolution coach Jay Heaps told the media after the match. “Guys are pretty upset about the way in which the game was managed from the referee. It really felt like there was a penalty at the end of the game – you didn’t get it, and the frustration blows over, and that’s just a tough part of the game.”

But the missed call on Franklin’s transgression wasn’t the genesis of the Revolution’s frustrations with Geiger.

Heaps said he started to notice a shift in the way the game was being called after Juan Agudelo’s 15th minute bicycle kick effort put the Revolution up early.

“I just felt like after we scored,” Heaps said, “we were playing against another group out there.”

The sense that Geiger’s game management was working against the Revolution wasn’t a new development in Jones’ view.

“The problem is that it’s not just this game, it’s other games when Geiger’s the referee,” Jones said. “Something is always happening against us.”

Earlier this year, Geiger officiated the first Revolution-DC encounter on May 23, a game in which Lee Nguyen and Chris Tierney were both sent off within minutes of each other. In total, Geiger refereed six Revolution games this year, and the locals went 2-3-1 during that span.

A local reporter advised the Revolution midfielder that DC had also taken issue with Geiger in the past, which came as no surprise Jones.

“These are important games,” Jones said, “and if you cannot handle it correctly, and if DC’s saying they have a problem with him, and we say we’re not happy with him, then something’s wrong. Now I sit inside here with my boys, and we’re out on holiday now, and that pisses me off.”

Although Jones, who faces a lengthy ban should he return to MLS next season, wasn’t shy to criticize Geiger during or after the match, he reiterated his apologies.

“Man to man, I would say to Geiger I’m sorry for what happened after,” Jones said. “It will not happen again.”


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