Nigel Pearson has called for the use of technology to aid the relationship between officials and clubs in the aftermath of West Bromwich Albion's controversial defeat at Bolton on Sunday.
Albion head to Fulham tonight for a Carling Cup third-round tie with doubts over Steve Watson (groin), Martin Albrechsten ( hamstring), Kevin Campbell ( ankle) and Chris Kirkland (ribs).
* What do you think? Visit our messageboard and give us your opinion. *
Curtis Davies is cup-tied and Zoltan Gera is still injured, so manager Bryan Robson will utilise his squad to the full for a game that Pearson, Albion's assistant manager, insists they are treating very seriously.
Pearson knows the value of the Carling Cup having won it as a player with Sheffield Wednesday in 1991 and reaching two finals with Middlesbrough as a player under Robson.
Albion's second-incommand is positive that his squad have put the defeat against Bolton firmly behind them, but has called for added assistance to help under-siege officials.
Robson was one of many Premiership managers left lamenting the performance of the referee, as he believed Mike Dean's decisions during the match against Bolton proved costly to his team.
He forced Diomansy Kamara into retaking his penalty after encroachment and then awarded a free-kick that led to Bolton's first goal after Albrechsten clashed with Hidetoshi Nakata.
There were also gamechanging decisions in the games at Fulham, West Ham and Blackburn, too, and Pearson feels it is time to bring football into the modern world. " T e c h n o l o g y should be used, as long gone are the days when only two or three games were televised and it was down to your own eyesight. Now every game is covered and you can pick the bones out of every decision," said Pearson. "If we can improve the decision-making process it has got to be good for everyone.
"I think the relationship between managers and officials could suffer and there is a danger it could worsen.
"I watched Match of the Day on Sunday evening and there were some strong words said but, like it or not, we have to work with the officials.
"It is a situation that, whatever it takes, we have to get more consistency and consistently correct decisions.
"We'll have to sit down and discuss what form it would take, but the fourth official could help the referee in terms of being wired up and giving him immediate feedback from watching a screen.
"That is available for managers and coaches now and there is at least a case for that to be considered. It would be like a third umpire in cricket.
"There are bound to be grey areas, but I think it would help the game so much more.
"There is a counter argument that football is a fast, flowing game. But there are big screens everywhere now and I think it would only add to the excitement," he added.
With millions of pounds resting on every possible decision that is made, Pearson admits that is bound to increase the tension levels of all concerned.
"There is so much riding on results and managers are under pressure all the time," he continued. "There is a fine line between success and failure.
"We can all get frustrated as it is an emotional game and that includes the relationship between the coaching staff and officials.
"Maybe the behaviour of the coaching staff should be reasonable and they can be involved in helping referees to make decision.
"There are a number of managers who are ruing decisions from the weekend that happened during pivotal moments of games."
There will be enforced changes for tonight's tie at Fulham, so Albion will shuffle their squad around once again in search of the winning formula.
Albion have looked far more solid since they switched to a back three but Pearson was giving no clues away as to what tactics Robson would be employing.
Whatever side Albion field tonight, Pearson is expecting results to improve in the medium term.
"We have got more depth this season and it is disappointing not to have got better results, but there are a number of sides with similar problems," said Pearson.
"We have aspirations for this season but, at present, we are looking no further than staying up until we are near our best on a regular basis. We can argue that we haven't had the rub of the green but only we can sort it out.
"I know there has been criticism of us and other teams in terms of rotating our team, but any decisions made will be for the benefit of the team.
"We have got to look at who can play two games in 48 hours. It is inevitable that there are going to be changes.
"Playing Sunday and Tuesday is a bit unfortunate but that's the way it is and we'll get on with it. It's not going to change the fact that we are going to Craven Cottage to try and win the game."