Southend defender claims referee admitted he 'missed one' and was 'intimidated' by Sunderland

Jason Demetriou has spoken out after the game at Sunderland
Jason Demetriou has spoken out after the game at Sunderland

Southend United defender Jason Demetriou was seething after his side weren't awarded a penalty in their defeat at Sunderland - and claimed the referee admitted that he 'might have missed one'.

The Blues felt they should have been awarded a spot kick in the first half when Tom Flanagan brought down Dru Yearwood, but referee Joe Lewis remained unmoved despite heavy protests.

Manager Chris Powell was fuming at the decision, claiming it 'belittled' his players, while Demetriou was equally unimpressed.

And the 30-year-old revealed that Lewis admitted his mistake during the interval at the Stadium of Light, while feeling that the official may have felt intimidated by the Black Cats.

"I thought it was a clear penalty," said the defender, speaking to Southend's official website.

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"We give the ref enough stick, but he knew. At half time I said to him and he said he "might have missed one”.

"It was a clear penalty and if we score, at 1-1 it’s a totally different game.

"Sometimes at these big clubs they get intimidated but that’s the way it goes."

But while disappointed with that key decision, Demetriou was pleased with how the Shrimpers acquitted themselves.

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Indeed, he felt that they 'took the game' to their promotion-chasing hosts.

"We can take a lot because we were brave and we were the ones who looked like the home team at times in the first half," he added.

"We took the game to them and created some good chances.

"If you get the right decisions then we could have been right in the game so I think that’s the main thing to take from it."