Martin Atkinson didn't exactly have his best day at the office on Monday, putting in a rather weak refereeing performance that was wholly inconsistent and infuriating to both sides. One of the many misjudged incidents was Wayne Rooney's nasty step into Oscar from the side, high up on the shin. It was not at all dissimilar to the famous Ashely Barnes tackle on Nemanja Matic, from which the Chelsea midfielder arguably has still not completely recovered mentally.
Rooney did receive a yellow card, but former referee turned Daily Mail click-jockey Graham Poll is probably not wrong nor is he alone in thinking that it should've been a card of a different color. Still, at least the Manchester United man apologized afterwards, so Oscar's got that going for him, which is nice.
"It was accidental. I knew straight away I caught him and could have caused him a bit of damage, so I apologise."
"I apologised on the pitch, nothing was meant and I think the referee saw there was no intention of hurting him. He's given me a yellow card which I probably deserve."
-Wayne Rooney; source: ESPN
The Chelsea man was still feeling the effects after the match, but manager Guus Hiddink is confident that no lasting damage was incurred.
"He got some whacks. I think he will be okay."
-Guus Hiddink; source: ESPN
After having to make do without five players on Monday, we will certainly welcome having a cleaner bill of health for the weekend. Especially since, at least so far under interim guidance, we're even more reluctant to use the youth now than we've ever been with Mourinho.