Marco Kurz was left frustrated after Adelaide United suffered a 2-1 loss in controversial circumstances against Newcastle Jets at McDonald Jones Stadium on Saturday.
Andrew Nabbout’s opening goal correctly stood despite being in an offside position, after the final touch came off Vince Lia, before the Reds netted a deserved equaliser through George Blackwood.
But with the match seemingly destined for a draw, Newcastle were given a contentious penalty when the referee deemed the ball struck Ryan Strain’s arm, after Dimitri Petratos’ shot ricocheted off Ersan Gülüm.
Petratos converted the ensuing spot-kick in the 89th minute to steal all three points for the hosts.
Speaking in the post-match press conference Kurz believed the tight contest, in warm conditions, warranted a draw as neither side did enough to win the game.
“I think today it was very difficult for both teams to play with this temperature, it was very hot,” he said.
“I think I saw the ninety minutes and a draw was a correct result for my side and also we came back after conceding first.
“And scored a very good goal after a good counter-attack and then we lost the game after the decision from the referee.”
Kurz was left stunned by the questionable penalty which ultimately decided the outcome of the match.
Replays appeared to show the ball struck the chest of Strain as well as his arm being against his body.
“I think everybody and also the players from Newcastle, the coach from Newcastle, said it was not a penalty,” he said.
“Then you can’t make this decision in this moment when all the boys fight for a result.
“My team was fighting for a good result and now they stay frustrated in the dressing room and I understand the boys.”
Adelaide United host Central Coast Mariners in Round 12 of the Hyundai A-League 2017/18 season on Tuesday, 26 December at Coopers Stadium. Kick-off is at 7.20pm ACDT.