Former Premier League referee Mark Clattenburg has admitted going into May 2016’s infamous 2-2 draw between Chelsea and Tottenham with a “gameplan” in order to not be blamed for Spurs’ failure to win the Premier League title.
Mauricio Pochettino’s men needed to beat Chelsea at Stamford Bridge to keep their hopes alive and went 2-0 up before the break, but they ultimately let that lead slip in an ill-tempered second half.
In total, Spurs picked up nine yellow cards to Chelsea’s three, while record fines of £375,000 and £225,000 were handed out to the clubs for failing to control their players.
“I went in with a gameplan, that I didn’t want Tottenham blaming Mark Clattenburg that they were going to lose the title,” he told NBC’s Men in Blazers podcast.
“There should have been three red cards to Tottenham. I allowed them [Spurs] to self-destruct so all the media, all the people in the world went: ‘Tottenham lost the title’.
“If I sent three players off from Tottenham, what are the headlines? ‘Clattenburg cost Tottenham the title’.
“It was pure theatre that Tottenham self-destructed against Chelsea and Leicester won the title.