CARSON, Calif. -- After the latest Chivas USA loss, head coach Wilmer Cabrera called for a little respect.
The usually reserved Cabrera slammed the officiating following Saturday night’s 2-1 loss to Seattle Sounders FC, questioning the straight red card handed out to midfielder Marco Delgado in the 73rd minute when the game was tied and still up for grabs. Seattle got the go-ahead goal from Obafemi Martins eight minutes later to secure the three points in come-from-behind fashion.
Yet, the way Cabrera saw it, the ejection was the latest example in a season-long trend.
“We don’t receive the respect and we don’t receive fair consideration from the refereeing,” Cabrera told reporters in his postgame press conference. “We know that it’s going to be difficult, but even at home, it’s the second game we finish with 10 men; that’s not right. Every call and every 50-50 call was for the other team.
“[Seattle] are a very good team. They won because they scored two goals and we only scored one, but it’s a little bit frustrating with those calls, those issues and that red card. At this point, it’s fair to say the players feel that they don’t receive respect from the guys in yellow.”
Delgado, who was in the starting lineup in place of injured rookie Thomas McNamara (ACL tear), was sent off for his tackle on Gonzalo Pineda, putting the Goats in a disadvantage at a time when they seemed to have found their offensive rhythm. The Rojiblancos saw their winless streak extend to six games and Cabrera was more than willing to vent his frustrations.
“Both players went for the ball, and because Marky is a young player on Chivas USA, he’s taken out,” Cabrera said. “It’s simple [because] nobody is going to complain or say anything. It’s easy to take advantage of us because nobody complains. That’s not right.”
On March 16, midfielder Agustín Pelletieri, in his second career MLS match, received a straight red card in the 13th minute against the Vancouver Whitecaps, but the Goats were able to salvage a point. Cabrera suggested that opponents and referees look at Chivas USA without any concern, citing the last year under the current branding as a possible reason. He said his squad head into every game feeling like they can’t make any mistakes because they won’t get any calls.
Veteran defender Carlos Bocanegra, the team's captain, didn't make excuses.
“It’s always tough with 10 men,” Bocanegra told MLSsoccer.com. “We’re at home and we’re pushing for the win. Clint [Dempsey] picked up a ball and they broke on us. [Dempsey and Martins] are good up top. It was a good combination and they punished us. It’s unfortunate, but even before we were down to 10 men, we hurt ourselves a little.”