VIDEO: King’s Lynn Town boss Setchell admits he ‘didn’t see’ Thurlbourne’s controversial goal
King's Lynn Town boss Gary Setchell insists he wasn't doing an 'Arsene Wenger' despite admitting he hadn't seen the controversial goal that sparked ugly scenes at The Walks on Saturday.
Title-chasing Lynn thumped Thrapston Town 5-1 thanks to a brace from Rob Hughes, goals from Luke Thurlbourne and Jack Defty, and a Danny Mortimer own goal.
However, it was the fall-out from Thurlbourne's goal - scored when the midfielder was kicking the ball back to the visitors' keeper from near the halfway life after a stoppage in play - which sparked a half-time melee that spilled into the tunnel.
In a phrase often used by the Arsenal boss, the Linnets manager said he missed the incident which put his side 2-1 up and caused much anger amongst Thrapston's players and management.
Setchell said: 'I saw the lad go down because the ball hit him in the face. We were in good possession of the ball and the referee blew his whistle.
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'I turned round to talk to Spriggsy about getting warmed up and the ball went in. I didn't actually see what had happened. I don't know if there was any dialogue between the players as to whether the ref was going to give a drop ball - then there was mayhem.
'I saw Luke celebrating and as far as I was concerned it was a goal. If it would have happened to us I would have been unhappy about it but these things happen in football. Someone come down and said 'you should let us score' but it all happened so fast and I was really semi-oblivious to what had gone on.
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'I'm not doing an Arsene Wenger and saying 'I didn't see it, I didn't see it' - I genuinely didn't know whether it came from a contested drop ball or what.'
Setchell defended Lynn's decision not to allow the visitors to equalise immediately after Thurlbourne's goal.
Similar incidents have caused confusion - due to the lack of a definite rule regarding 'unsporting' goals - including the one which saw Wenger offer Sheffield United an FA Cup replay in 1999 because Marc Overmars had scored after the ball had been kicked into touch due to an injury.
'I haven't spoken to Luke about it but I will do. He was happy he scored a goal and he's that type of player - he wants to win,' said Setchell.
'If it was an uncontested drop ball and he shot then he shot. Normally if you're giving the ball back you put it out on the sideline so it's difficult.
'At the end of the day the referee was there and he deemed there was nothing wrong with it within the laws of the game.'