Derek McInnes left fuming in post-match interview as Celtic progress to final

By John McGinley

January 14, 2023

Kilmarnock manager Derek McInnes is not a happy man this evening, convinced that his side should have had a penalty late on against Celtic at Hampden.

The Bhoys were 1-0 up on Killie when Giorgos Giakoumakis and Joe Wright vied for the ball in the Celtic box. Physical play from the Greek had those of a Kilmarnock persuasion convinced of a foul as Wright went down, but neither the referee nor any VAR officials felt it was worthy of a spot-kick.

Giakoumakis then scored shortly afterwards to make the result secure and move Celtic firmly into the final of the tournament.

Photo by Ian MacNicol/Getty Images

Speaking after the match, McInnes let rip on Viaplay Sports, stating: “We should have had a penalty, absolutely we should have. It’s two hands – Giakoumakis has got his arms wrapped around Joe Wright and he goes down. He can’t get to the ball. The way the throw has come in, he can’t get to it. He’s come through the back of him. It’s a penalty every day.

“The referee has a great view of it and I’m really disappointed with that because for me it’s a penalty. I felt it was a penalty at the time and even more having seen it. We came here to get a job done and we needed the right decisions to be made.

“We needed people to do their jobs right and my player did for the vast majority of the game and we should have had a penalty kick. I didn’t ask about the penalty, there’s no point. VAR should have been speaking together – not me after the event.

“What’s the point in me speaking to the referee? VAR should be speaking to the referee. Not a conversation with me, after the event, when Celtic are through to the Final. That, pre VAR, post VAR, that’s a penalty kick and how we can’t get to the right decision is… Giakoumakis gets a bit excited, he’s clumsy, it’s a strikers challenge, two hands around his waist.’ Whoever is in the VAR has to be big enough to say ‘are you sure you have seen this right? You need to come and see this again.'”

For me, it’s one of those decisions you scream for if it’s your player going to ground but Giakoumakis didn’t exactly exert much pressure on Wright. The Kilmarnock player was looking for it, though the Celtic striker did look a bit clumsy.

Frankly, it could have gone either way. Today, it seems a marginal call went for us, which makes a big change to other tight decisions in Celtic matches since VAR was introduced.

Let’s see how it all plays out in the media on this one!

In other news, Josip Juranovic and Giorgos Giakoumakis prove Ange Postecoglou’s point in Celtic semi-final win.