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Ref Watch: Should Man City striker Erling Haaland’s ‘reckless’ challenge be a red card? | Football News


Dermot Gallagher dissects the big refereeing flashpoints from the New Year’s action in the Premier League…

Man City 1-1 Everton

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Manchester City’s draw against Everton in the Premier League

INCIDENT: Kevin De Bruyne was booked for a late challenge on Amadou Onana, but was he lucky to escape a sending off?

VERDICT: Correct decision, yellow card.

Slowing things down will always make things look worse and the still frame looked bad, but the correct decision was the yellow card.

Stephen Warnock De Bruyne’s late challenge

DERMOT SAYS: This is why a still picture doesn’t always tell the truth. If you just see that picture you think that is a really bad tackle, it’s a leg-breaker, a red card.

But if you wind it on, you see that actually what happens is he actually catches him shin-to-shin. He doesn’t catch him with his studs and he doesn’t impact on his shin. Andrew Madley had the best view and took the correct action, yellow card.

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Manchester City duo Kevin De Bruyne and Erling Haaland both received yellows in their match with Everton. But were they fortunate to stay on the pitch?

INCIDENT: Everton were left frustrated again as Erling Haaland caught Vitaliy Mykolenko with a strong, late challenge that resulted in a yellow card.

VERDICT: Correct decision, yellow card.

DERMOT SAYS: I think this is a yellow card as well, if you watch he goes in one-footed. He doesn’t go through it airborne with two feet out of control.

He’s gone one-footed. He catches him, no doubt about that but it’s a yellow card offence. It’s reckless but it’s not seriously endangered the safety of an opponent and I think Madley read it well.

I think he refereed the whole game really well. It was a really good game of football because of the way he allowed players to challenge. It was a typical English football match.

INCIDENT: Riyad Mahrez thought he should have been awarded a penalty when Idrissa Gueye nibbled at his feet inside the penalty area.

VERDICT: Correct decision, no penalty.

DERMOT SAYS: I think there was minimal contact.

There is no doubt he stepped on his toe but is it enough to give a penalty? I think not and we’ve heard recently how referees have been asked to approach the game a little bit more tolerant and I think this is evidence of that, for me. I think it was a fair decision.

I think you have got to allow physical contact, there is physical contact all over the pitch, at corners for example, we see players jostling, you see players tackling. It’s almost impossible to tackle a player without making some physical contact. There is minimal contact but for me, not enough to give a penalty and I hope going forward people will accept that more readily.

WARNOCK’S VIEW: I think the interesting part would have been if he had been given a yellow for simulation.

That was my concern at the time, because it was not simulation. That was a coming together of players and whether that was a great spot by the referee or he let it go, sometimes the best thing to do is to do nothing and I think that was the right decision at this time.

Wolves 0-1 Man Utd

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Manchester United’s win against Wolves in the Premier League

INCIDENT: Marcus Rashford was denied a second goal after his effort ricocheted back off goalkeeper Jose Sa and found the back of the net, only for that to be ruled out for handball.

VERDICT: Correct decision, no goal.

DERMOT SAYS: It is Marcus Rashford that has scored, that’s the big thing.

The law says you can’t score with your hand or arm, whether it be deliberate or accidental.

There’s no doubt it is accidental. It has struck him and he has no idea it has struck him, and then it goes in.

What I would say is Man Utd shouldn’t be surprised by this. It actually happened when they played Everton earlier in the season with the same player. Rashford went through, it came off his knee, hit his hand and he scored.

So, it is the second time it has happened to him this season. The small caveat in the law is that a goal will be ruled out whether it is deliberate or accidental.

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Former Premier League referee Dermot Gallagher gives his expert analysis on the double drama which saw VAR overlook a handball in the penalty area and Marcus Rashford’s goal disallowed.

Brighton 2-4 Arsenal

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Arsenal’s win against Brighton in the Premier League.

INCIDENT: Jeremy Sarmiento is cautioned for simulation late on in Arsenal’s victory at Brighton.

VERDICT: Correct decision, booking.

DERMOT SAYS: This is what people want referees to do in this situation and that’s to identify it and act on it, and he (Anthony Taylor) has done exactly that.

INCIDENT: Solly March is booked for a late challenge on Oleksandr Zinchenko.

VERDICT: No red card.

DERMOT SAYS: I would have been astonished if that had been upgraded to a red card. He comes through, it’s a foul there is no doubt about it, It was a reckless foul, he catches him, he catches him one-footed, he catches him low, but for me it’s a yellow card.

Nottingham Forest 1-1 Chelsea

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from the 1-1 draw between Nottingham Forest and Chelsea in the Premier League

INCIDENT: Brennan Johnson went to ground after appearing to be caught by a sliding challenge from Mason Mount. However, there was no contact. Johnson avoided a booking for simulation.

VERDICT: No foul, referee doesn’t spot no contact.

DERMOT SAYS: I don’t think the referee recognised it for what it is and when you see it the interesting thing is the player does himself no favours because he goes down and is clearly not touched and he goes down clutching his shin. It’s clearly no foul on his shin, so the player has done himself any favours and the referee any favours. Much as I like to see a player yellow carded for that because it was simulation, if the referee doesn’t spot that, I think it’s understandable. There are going to be some missed.

One solution to this retrospective action to be taken, and then it does eradicate this. If you feel you get away with it, you are going to continue trying it. Whereas, if there is action taken after the weekend then it will stop happening.

Warnock on Johnson avoiding a booking

Tottenham 0-2 Aston Villa

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Aston Villa’s win against Tottenham in the Premier League.

INCIDENT: Ben Davies lunges in with two feet on Ashley Young, but gets the ball. The referee decides it is a foul and a booking to Davies.

VERDICT: Correct decision, yellow card.

DERMOT SAYS: “It’s not a wise challenge but I think it’s a yellow card because of what happens. He seems to go two-footed, but when he actually arrives, he arrives one-footed. Two things, one, he landed just in front of the player, which is lucky for Ashley Young, and luckily he didn’t go that extra half a yard because if he had and end up on his shins, it definitely would have been a red card.”

WARNOCK’S VIEW: “I think Dermot is right, the way Ben Davies goes in for it, he just plants his foot in time enough to make sure he doesn’t hurt Ashley Young, it’s a fraction away from being a bad tackle.”

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