Slaven Bilić Goes Down in History as First Coach Sent Off in England by New Rules

Daniela Rogulj

August 27, 2019 – Slaven Bilić became the first victim of new football rules and, quite frankly, poor reffing in Saturday’s meeting between West Bromwich Albion and Derby County.

Namely, the former Croatia national team coach and current West Bromwich Albion leader has become the first coach in England to be eliminated after receiving two yellow cards, reports Slobodna Dalmacija.

However, Bilić fell victim to errors by the referee. In both instances, he received yellow cards for protesting after a quite dubious decision by the referee. 

Recall, as of this season, as a part of the Laws of the Game by the International Football Association Board (IFAB), yellow and red cards have generally been introduced for coaches (and members of the staff on the bench). Namely, Premier League managers will only receive verbal cautions, though, in the FA Cup, Football League, Carabao Cup, EFL Trophy and National League, they will be shown cards. Bilić was the first to pay. 

In Saturday’s draw between WBA and Derby County (1:1), the Split strategist went down in history as the first coach to leave the bench due to the exclusion of a second yellow card earned in the same game. Bilić earned his first yellow card near the end of the first half when he protested to fourth official Ross Joyce after referee Gavin Ward awarded a penalty to the hosts for playing a hand, even though WBA’s Filip Krovinović hit the ball with his shoulder. 

The referee showed Bilić a second yellow card at a result of 1:1 because he protested the ball going to the Derby goalkeeper instead of a WBA corner. And in that case, it seems Bilić was right, though it makes no difference now. Bilić will thus watch the next game against Blackburn Rovers from the stands. If it’s any consolation, WBA fans chanted for Bilić as he left the pitch. After five rounds, WBA is still undefeated with two wins and three draws.

“I cannot be satisfied, not only with this, but with the whole range of decisions that affected us. I just politely gave my opinion, there was nothing on a personal level. It just was too much for me. It was obvious at the end of the meeting that it was a corner for us. I’m like that. I will never be rude to the people, it’ll never be personal, but I don’t understand why I can’t voice my opinion when it’s not about fashion weekend in London,” Bilić said after the game. 

To read more about sport in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page


Subscribe to our newsletter

the fields marked with * are required
Email: *
First name:
Last name:
Gender: Male Female
Please don't insert text in the box below!

Leave a Comment