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Carney handball renews fifth official talk

AAP logoAAP 5/11/2016 Emma Kemp

Vexed Melbourne Victory coach Kevin Muscat believes referee Chris Beath simply made a mistake in missing David Carney's handball goal, which has sparked renewed calls for a fifth official in the A-League.

Carney scored a second-half brace off the bench to drive Sydney FC to a 2-1 win over Victory, but his equaliser was marred by controversy.

Replays showed the ball had struck the former Socceroo's arm as he brought it down for a left-footed finish.

Carney himself conceded he didn't need to see the replay to know what had happened but felt Beath's view may have been obstructed by leaping Victory defender Stefan Nigro.

"Because he (Nigro) just missed a header I was very close to him, so I think it would have been hard for the ref," Carney said.

"It was even hard for me - I thought he was going to head it away but he didn't ... I just reacted."

The incident riled the visiting camp and prompted Twitter users to suggest Carney had safer hands than Adam Gilchrist behind the stumps and the Sydney Swans might come calling for his marking skills.

Muscat, perhaps mindful of having been fined $5000 less than a fortnight ago over his FFA Cup referee spray, was initially unwilling to elaborate on the incident.

But he eventually admitted it was hard to take because the goal changed the complexion of the game.

"Those incidents can't go unnoticed, but they did," Muscat said.

"I'd love to get into a conversation, but maybe get Chris here to explain his decision because they seem to be doing that now.

"Without doubt if there was someone with a camera that gets brought back, because they only would have been deliberating whether it was one or two hands.

"I certainly don't understand.

"The linesmen can help out as well, they've got to have some more power to make decisions.

"I've already watched the replay, Chris is not obstructed in my view.

"He's obviously missed it. We all make mistakes."

Beath himself told Fox Sports that, from his view at the time, Carney did not appear to move his arm towards the ball.

The incident prompted former Socceroo and Fox Sports pundit Mark Bosnich to reiterate his calls for a fifth official.

"That first goal should never have stood," Bosnich said.

"I know I say it all the time, if there was a fifth official behind the goal, he sees that."

It comes a week after Central Coast chief executive Shaun Mielekamp called for a fifth and sixth official after match officials missed an obvious handball that should have given the Mariners a possible match-winning penalty late in their 1-1 draw with Western Sydney.

Football Federation Australia used them in last season's final series.

FFA have also flagged the possibility of introducing video replays for contentious calls in the finals series, pending the success of trials and FIFA's approval.

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