Atlanta United declines to comment on officiating against Columbus

Credit: Ben Jackson/Atlanta United

Credit: Ben Jackson/Atlanta United

COLUMBUS, Ohio — For the second time this season, referee Joe Dickerson played an important - and supporters would argue negative - role in an Atlanta United game against Columbus.

ExploreAtlanta United rallies to split points with Columbus

Dickerson waved off two Atlanta United goals in Sunday’s 2-2 draw with Columbus. The dropped points may be important because Atlanta United trails Columbus for the seventh and final playoff spot by five points with eight games remaining. There are five teams between Atlanta United and the Crew.

The first disallowed goal was a header by Santiago Sosa in the first half. Atlanta United midfielder Amar Sejdic said Dickerson told him that Sosa pushed a Columbus player before the goal. It appeared that the Columbus player fell because he got trapped between two Atlanta United players as all three attempted to go for the corner kick.

The second goal was scored by Edwin Mosquera in the 74th minute with Atlanta United trailing 2-1. It was waved off because he was judged to be offside. There were two Atlanta United players who were offside when the ball was played to Mosquera, but he didn’t appear to be offside upon looking at replays.

According to MLS when questioned by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Sosa’s goal was disallowed for a push by Sosa before scoring and Mosquera’s goal was disallowed by Mosquera being offside before scoring.

“By the rules of the league, I cannot speak about the guys making the calls,” Atlanta United manager Gonzalo Pineda said. “So I cannot, I think, I can’t even tell the name of their profession. But you guys write about it. I mean, you guys watch the film. And please write about it. Analyze the same way you will analyze and criticize coaches, players, and dissect every play, analyze and criticize some of the guys.

“We coaches, we cannot talk publicly about (it) because our hands are tied, and it’s frustrating. But the first thing that comes to my mind is the call when we scored at home on a set piece. Minimum contact and it’s the same play. But, as I said a few games ago, referees are always right. And we coaches we’re always wrong.”

ExploreAtlanta United still believes it will make MLS playoffs

Dickerson was the referee when the teams met at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on May 28. That game ended with Pineda and Thiago Almada receiving red cards. Pineda said then that he received the ejection because he threw down his coat. Almada received his, and a three-game suspension, because he made physical contact with Dickerson after the match. The loss snapped Atlanta United’s 13-game unbeaten streak at home.

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Atlanta United’s 2022 MLS schedule

Feb. 27 Atlanta United 3, Sporting KC 1

March 5 Colorado 3, Atlanta United 0

March 13 Atlanta United 2, Charlotte 1

March 19 Atlanta United 3, Montreal 3

April 2 Atlanta United 1, D.C. United 0

April 10 Charlotte 1, Atlanta United 0

April 16 Atlanta United 0, Cincinnati 0

April 24 Miami 2, Atlanta United 1

April 30 Montreal 2, Atlanta United 1

May 7 Atlanta United 4, Chicago 1

May 15 Atlanta United 2, New England 2

May 21 Atlanta United 2, Nashville 2

May 28 Columbus 2, Atlanta United 1

June 19 Atlanta United 2, Miami 0

June 25 Toronto 2, Atlanta United 1

June 30 New York Red Bulls 2, Atlanta United 1

July 3 Atlanta United 2, NYCFC 2

July 9 Austin 3, Atlanta United 0

July 13 Atlanta United 2, Real Salt Lake 1

July 17 Atlanta United 1, Orlando 1

July 24 L.A. Galaxy 2, Atlanta United 0

July 30 Atlanta United 0, Chicago 0

Aug. 6 Atlanta United 2, Seattle 1

Aug. 13 Atlanta United 2, Cincinnati 2

Aug. 17 New York Red Bulls 2, Atlanta United 1

Aug. 21 Atlanta United 2, Columbus 2

Aug. 28 vs. D.C. United, 4 p.m., UNIV

Aug. 31 at Philadelphia, 7 p.m., FS1

Sept. 4 at Portland, 5:30 p.m., FOX

Sept. 10 vs. Toronto, 7:30 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

Sept. 14 at Orlando, 6 p.m., BSSO/BSSE

Sept. 17 vs. Philadelphia, 3:30 p.m., UniMas

Oct. 1 at New England, 1 p.m., UniMas