In a court of law, there's this thing called "hearsay." Essentially, it's someone saying they heard someone else say something incriminating. It's inadmissible as evidence because, well, that doesn't seem like a particularly reliable brand of evidence, does it?
The court of public opinion, of course, is not an actual court. So, unfortunately, Omar Gonzalez's comments about what referee Kevin Stott supposedly told a Galaxy teammate are probably going to get a lot more attention than they probably deserve. Here's what he told ESPN.com:
"It's tough when Stott says to one of your players that he's not going to give another yellow because he wants the best players to play in the next game. I think it's not his job to focus on the next game. It's his job to focus on the game tonight, the game at hand. For him to say that to one of our players is pretty ridiculous."
The player in question was Zach Scott, who was sitting on a yellow card -- a questionable card early in the match, by the way -- and did commit five fouls, including three in the final 10 minutes. Scott was, even Sigi Schmid admitted, lucky not to be shown the door. But it's still a little hard to take Gonzalez -- who has a history of bitching about referees -- at face value.
Did this anonymous teammate really tell Gonzalez this? Probably. Was Stott was being accurately quoted? That's far less likely. There are a lot of microphones and cameras on a nationally televised soccer match and for Stott to tell a player this would be shockingly stupid. It's obviously possible he did say this and if he did, well, Stott should probably be suspended and possibly fired.
More likely Gonzalez is attempting his hand at gamesmanship. Stott is not going to be the referee in next week's game regardless. But if Gonzalez can milk an extra card or two out of whoever is calling that game, well, he surely wouldn't mind.