RFL seeks explanation from Salford over Ian Watson’s refereeing comments

The Rugby Football League has asked Salford coach Ian Watson to explain his criticism of referee Marcus Griffiths at the weekend.

The Red Devils went down to a 22-8 defeat to Leeds at the AJ Bell Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

In his post-match press conference, Watson said: “As soon as the crowd went berserk at the referee, he just washed his hands of Salford and refereed the game in a totally different manner.

“That’s what I’m not happy about. People ask for your opinion – you should be able to give your opinion.

“Ganson needs to get in touch with me and tell me why he’s putting people in charge of a game who can’t control the game.

“I contacted him (Ganson) a few times last year and he never got back to me. We’re not Wigan or St Helens so we’re not important enough to deal with.”

Watson said he expected to be fined for his comments and an RFL spokesman confirmed that a letter has been sent to Salford seeking an explanation.

Watch our Last Tackle podcast, featuring a guest, every week. SUBSCRIBE to Love Rugby League on YouTube.

Listen to The Final Hooter podcast, featuring exclusive interviews, every week. SUBSCRIBE to Love Rugby League on Apple Podcasts.


  1. should also be asking why different punishments for the same offences .Just been looking at the disciplinary for dangerous contact Hull fc player gets 3 matches wigan ,leeds and saints get cautions Was looking to see what the saints player who did a spear tackle aganst roosters got, guess what not a thing

  2. I think Ian Watsons comments generally reflect what is most fans view at this current time. However I dont think its the fault of the referee, it seems the pool of referees is shrinking and as a result referees with little top grade experience are being exposed. I would ask the RFL how much they have invested in supporting and developing referees since they became professional as it seems it has deteriorated rather than improved. I would also ask why so many referees have decided to leave the sport in recent years and what is the root cause causing this to happen?

  3. Instead of being a coach, why doesn’t he become a match official?
    He seems to know more about than the current incumbents. Does he condone his players actions that give away penalties or is that too much like hypocrisy?
    The problem is NOT the match officials it’s the players, always has been always will be.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.