The Warriors are not sitting in 12th place on the NRL ladder because of referees. They have not lost 10 of their 18 games this season because of referees. The Warriors are not struggling to make the top eight because of referees.
While I agree there were refereeing errors made in the Warriors' 24-22 loss to the Eels on Saturday which probably cost them the game, I do not agree with using that as a cop-out.
We cannot forget, one of the errors the referees made in that game was missing a knock-on in the lead up to Issac Luke's try in the first half. That came after the Eels had scored two quick tries themselves and swung the momentum of the game.
Whenever a 50-50 call is made it is going to go against one team and I guarantee every team has felt hard done by at some point in the season. The best athletes, teams and coaches know that is going to be the case but they are not affected to the same extent because they put the result beyond doubt.
Teams like the Storm and the Roosters make the most of their opportunities and ensure that even if the calls don't go their way, they are in a position to cope with it.
For years Warriors fans have complained of an imaginary bias against their side by the NRL referees. I do not believe there is some sort of conspiracy in which the Australian referees are out to get the only New Zealand side in the competition. Even if there was, to put it bluntly, the Warriors are not good enough for that to be their biggest issue.
Until they stop dropping the ball at crucial moments, drifting in and out of games, lacking intensity and struggling to control matches, they have nobody to blame but themselves.
Warriors chief executive Cameron George has urged fans to show their support for the Warriors by dressing as referees and bringing whistles to their home game against the Canberra Raiders on Friday night.
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I've come to expect that sort of reaction from fans, particularly on social media, but for the boss of an NRL club to come up with something that petty is a little embarrassing and, I believe, an attempt to shift focus from the team's own failures.
And if you think one forward pass call is the reason the Warriors may not make the finals in 2019 you REALLY haven’t been watching enough of the Warriors games.— Warren Smith (@WarrenSmithFOX) July 29, 2019
I'm not one of those who believe the Warriors are up against some sort of #NRL conspiracy week to week. I don't believe referees are biased.— Ryan Nixon (@NewYorkNixon) July 27, 2019
The pair today just had a shocker and it ultimately helped determine the result in the Eels favour. #NRLEelsWarriors https://t.co/sVaHM98WHb
Is that because it’s too hard to come along dressed as missed tackles and woeful fifth tackle options? Or do the fans wearing Warrior jumpers already kinda do that?— Jam Master JP (@SportSightedNZ) July 28, 2019
I'm reading a book at the moment which describes playing the victim as a form of entitlement.
Convincing ourselves we are the victims makes us feel good. It shifts the blame - the referees made the mistakes, it's not our fault, we can still feel good about what we are doing.
It is much harder, but more beneficial, to look inwards. What could we do better? What parts of our game can we work on to ensure we're in a better position next season.
I'm sure the Warriors players and coaches know that and are doing everything they can to improve. I think the fans need to get off the "referees hate us" bandwagon and be more honest with themselves.