Leon Osman: 'Referee may have cost Everton Europe'

Steven Gerrard battles Leon Osman for possession during the Merseyside Derby on May 5, 2013
© PA Photos
Leon Osman says that Michael Oliver's decision to disallow a goal during the Merseyside derby could cost Everton European football for next season.

Everton midfielder Leon Osman is adamant that referee Michael Oliver may have cost his side European football next season following the Merseyside derby on Sunday.

The two sides played out a 0-0 draw at Anfield in a clash that witnessed Sylvain Distin's header disallowed for alleged shoving in the penalty area.

The Toffees are now five points adrift of the top five in the Premier League, and Osman is furious with the official's decision.

"I said to the referee at the end of the game that I thought he'd had a good game on the whole but the referees have got to get the big decisions right, and that was a massive decision for us," Osman told talkSPORT. "I'm not sure how that can be a foul against Victor Anichebe when the goalkeeper runs into him and we've had a good goal taken away from us.

"It's disappointing. We were still looking to get on the coattails of them [Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham] and try and catch them but that [draw is] probably not going to be enough in the end.

"We've come to Anfield, kept a clean sheet and had a goal taken off us which has denied us the victory, so we're disappointed."

Everton host West Ham United in their next game on Sunday.

Everton boss David Moyes on the touchline during the match against Stoke on March 30, 2013
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