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Chris Coleman has told the match officials not to bother apologising for the blunder which robbed Fulham of the chance to steal a point from their thrilling Premiership encounter with Manchester United.

Coleman was sent to the stand after voicing his protests much too fiercely when neither referee Martin Atkinson nor his assistant failed to spot Ruud van Nistelrooy standing a yard offside in the build-up to Louis Saha’s crucial goal in United’s 4-2 win.

The Cottagers chief admitted his comments were unrepeatable, but felt they were fully justified given the abysmal error, which even Sir Alex Ferguson agreed had been made.

And, while Coleman usually welcomes the admission of any referee that they have made a mistake, on this occasion it would be a waste of time.

“We all make mistakes and I have had referees admit them before,” said Coleman.

“But when you get something wrong that badly I am not sure I could accept it. It was just unbelievable, not even close.

“If I make a mistake I get criticised, so why shouldn’t the officials.

“I said something to the assistant which probably wasn’t very nice but it was such a poor decision. He was in a perfect position to see it and I just do not understand why he got it wrong.

“One of my players queried it and he just said ‘I may have made a mistake’. Well, that was nice.”

Coleman’s frustration was understandable given his side twice found themselves two goals down yet, after Brian McBride and Heidar Helguson had both converted close-range headers, could easily have grabbed a draw with an impressive second half show.