Sunderland defender Wes Brown's red card at Stoke City is a genuine candidate for worst refereeing decision of the Premier League era.

Brown was dismissed by referee Kevin Friend for leaping into a tackle on Charlie Adam, yet made no contact with the Stoke midfielder. Mackems boss Gustavo Poyet was understandably livid with the decision.

Gif Of Wes Brown's Red Card

It is only the second sending off of the 34-year-old's career, although it will almost certainly be rescinded.

Brown's only other red card was when he was playing for Manchester United in a 1-0 victory at Liverpool in January 2005.

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  • FBL-ENG-PR-STOKE-SUNDERLAND

    Referee Kevin Friend (C) is surrounded by Sunderland players after sending off Sunderland's English defender Wes Brown during the English Premier League football match between Stoke City and Sunderland at the Britannia Stadium in Stoke-on-Trent on November 23, 2013. AFP PHOTO/ANDREW YATES - RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. NO USE WITH UNAUTHORIZED AUDIO, VIDEO, DATA, FIXTURE LISTS, CLUB/LEAGUE LOGOS OR LIVE SERVICES. ONLINE IN-MATCH USE LIMITED TO 45 IMAGES, NO VIDEO EMULATION. NO USE IN BETTING, GAMES OR SINGLE CLUB/LEAGUE/PLAYER PUBLICATIONS. (Photo credit should read ANDREW YATES/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Stoke City v Sunderland - Britannia Stadium

    Sunderland's Wes Brown leaves the pitch after being shown a red card for a challenge on Stoke City's Charlie Adam

  • FBL-ENG-PR-STOKE-SUNDERLAND

    Sunderland's English defender Wes Brown reacts after getting sent off during the English Premier League football match between Stoke City and Sunderland at the Britannia Stadium in Stoke-on-Trent on November 23, 2013. AFP PHOTO/ANDREW YATES - RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. NO USE WITH UNAUTHORIZED AUDIO, VIDEO, DATA, FIXTURE LISTS, CLUB/LEAGUE LOGOS OR LIVE SERVICES. ONLINE IN-MATCH USE LIMITED TO 45 IMAGES, NO VIDEO EMULATION. NO USE IN BETTING, GAMES OR SINGLE CLUB/LEAGUE/PLAYER PUBLICATIONS. (Photo credit should read ANDREW YATES/AFP/Getty Images)

  • FBL-ENG-PR-STOKE-SUNDERLAND

    Sunderland's English defender Wes Brown reacts after getting sent off during the English Premier League football match between Stoke City and Sunderland at the Britannia Stadium in Stoke-on-Trent on November 23, 2013. AFP PHOTO/ANDREW YATES - RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. NO USE WITH UNAUTHORIZED AUDIO, VIDEO, DATA, FIXTURE LISTS, CLUB/LEAGUE LOGOS OR LIVE SERVICES. ONLINE IN-MATCH USE LIMITED TO 45 IMAGES, NO VIDEO EMULATION. NO USE IN BETTING, GAMES OR SINGLE CLUB/LEAGUE/PLAYER PUBLICATIONS. (Photo credit should read ANDREW YATES/AFP/Getty Images)

  • Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Stoke City v Sunderland - Britannia Stadium

    Sunderland's Wes Brown leaves the pitch after being shown a red card for a challenge on Stoke City's Charlie Adam

  • Soccer - Barclays Premier League - Stoke City v Sunderland - Britannia Stadium

    Sunderland player surround referee Kevin Friend after he shows team-mate Wes Brown a red card for a challenge on Stoke City's Charlie Adam

  • Stoke City v Sunderland - Premier League

    STOKE ON TRENT, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 23: Steven Fletcher of Sunderland and John O'Shea of Sunderland appeal to Referee Kevin Friend after Wes Brown of Sunderland (not pictured) was sent off during the Barclays Premier League match between Stoke City and Sunderland at Britannia Stadium on November 23, 2013 in Stoke on Trent, England. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

  • Stoke City v Sunderland - Premier League

    STOKE ON TRENT, ENGLAND - NOVEMBER 23: Steven Fletcher of Sunderland and John O'Shea of Sunderland appeal to Referee Kevin Friend after Wes Brown of Sunderland (not pictured) was sent off during the Barclays Premier League match between Stoke City and Sunderland at Britannia Stadium on November 23, 2013 in Stoke on Trent, England. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)

  • FBL-ENG-PR-STOKE-SUNDERLAND

    Referee Kevin Friend (C) is surrounded by Sunderland players after sending off Sunderland's English defender Wes Brown during the English Premier League football match between Stoke City and Sunderland at the Britannia Stadium in Stoke-on-Trent on November 23, 2013. AFP PHOTO/ANDREW YATES - RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. NO USE WITH UNAUTHORIZED AUDIO, VIDEO, DATA, FIXTURE LISTS, CLUB/LEAGUE LOGOS OR LIVE SERVICES. ONLINE IN-MATCH USE LIMITED TO 45 IMAGES, NO VIDEO EMULATION. NO USE IN BETTING, GAMES OR SINGLE CLUB/LEAGUE/PLAYER PUBLICATIONS. (Photo credit should read ANDREW YATES/AFP/Getty Images)


The former England international made his first start in nearly two years a fortnight ago, and was named man of the match in the Black Cats' win over Manchester City.

wes brown red card

Sunderland players remonstrate with Kevin Friend


It is the second League match in succession in which Stoke have benefitted from an astonishing refereeing decision, after the late penalty they were awarded at Swansea by Robert Madley.