Referee Anthony Taylor insists the decision to go on his stag do days before taking charge of Swansea against Burnley had no bearing on the controversial penalty blunder he made during the fixture last month.
However, the 38-year-old did admit his call to award Burnley a spot-kick at the Liberty Stadium for a handball which had actually been committed by Clarets striker Sam Vokes was “indefensible”.
Taylor came in for widespread criticism after failing to spot the ball had struck Vokes on the arm during the Premier League match on March 4, instead awarding a penalty to Burnley in their 3-2 defeat.
The Cheshire official had only returned from a stag do in Marbella at the start of that week, but in an appearance on ‘The Referees – Onside with Carragher & Neville’, to be aired on Sunday night on Sky Sports 1, he insisted that was not to blame for his error.
When asked whether he felt the trip had had any influence, Taylor said: “Not personally, no.
“When my stag do had been planned, we planned it so that we were back in plenty of time.
“Training was still carried out when we were doing that. The preparation for this game was no different than for any other game.”
However, Taylor did confess it had been a terrible call on his part to award the penalty.
“At the time the reasoning behind the decision was based around the last arm I saw in the air was from a Swansea player,” he said.
“It was totally flawed logic at that moment in time. The reaction of the Swansea players suggests to me that something’s not right here.
“The reason I look a bit lost and meandering around is I’m trying to speak to my colleagues.
“It was difficult with so many players surrounding me and trying to influence me from both sides. But you’re also looking to see if there’s any kind of information there to make me change my decision.
“It’s important to have a degree of honesty when we’re doing this – you can’t defend the indefensible.
“For me personally and my personal sense of pride, it’s a really poor decision.”