Manchester City, Southampton, West Brom and Newcastle benefited from incorrect decisions over the weekend, according to our Ref Review panel.
Refereeing decisions are regularly the source of debate among fans, pundits, players and managers so this season a five-strong TEAMtalk panel will be passing judgement on every red card (or avoidance of one), every penalty and any other major incident every weekend.
We’ll also keep a tally of the major decisions to go for and against each team in an attempt to settle the never-ending debate about whether certain clubs are favoured more than others by Premier League referees.
Adam Lallana penalty appeal v Tottenham: A half-hearted appeal for a penalty fell on deaf ears – and rightly so as there was certainly no foul committed by Dele Alli. Verdict: Correct decision
James Milner avoiding sending-off v Tottenham: He was fortunate not to have been booked earlier but, once he had been, Milner calmed down. He clattered into Danny Rose towards the end, but it was an accidental clash and, all five of our panel agreed, not worthy of a second yellow card. Verdict: Correct decision
Diego Costa penalty appeal v Aston Villa: He did his best to engineer contact – or at least make it look as though there had been some – but Costa’s attempt to cheat Joleon Lescott and con the referee failed on this occasion. Verdict: Correct decision
Diego Costa and Ashley Westwood tangle: Jose Mourinho said he was pleased Costa didn’t react to provocation from Westwood, with replays appearing to show the Aston Villa midfielder grabbed the striker’s groin. Either way, neither player did enough to warrant any action from the referee. Handbags at dawn. Verdict: Correct decision
Crystal Palace penalty v West Ham: Dwight Gayle could certainly claim to have ‘won’ this penalty, but the referee had no choice but to point to the spot after the Palace striker got to the ball first before Carl Jenkinson kicked him from behind. Verdict: Correct decision
Dwight Gayle sending-off v West Ham: Alan Pardew said the referee was hasty in showing Gayle a second yellow card, protesting “he’s missed the ball by about a centimetre”. Unfortunately, however, ‘nearly’ getting the ball isn’t much of a defence. It was put forward by one member of our panel that a higher-profile player may have got away with it, but it was a brainless challenge to make in the first place by a player on a tightrope. A four-to-one majority reckoned he left the referee with no choice. Verdict: Correct decision
Bournemouth penalty appeal v Manchester City: It’s debatable whether Bournemouth would have hung on had they been awarded and scored an early penalty with the score still 0-0, but Nicolas Otamendi did not get enough of the ball and should have been penalised for bringing down Dan Gosling. Verdict: Incorrect decision
Kelechi Iheanacho disallowed goal v Bournemouth: Things evened themselves out later in the game in any case as Iheanacho was incorrectly ruled offside when chipping what would have been a sixth goal for City. Verdict: Incorrect decision
Virgil van Dijk goal v Leicester City: Jamie Vardy scored twice to keep the smile on Claudio Ranieri’s face, but the Italian may not have been happy had Van Dijk’s offside goal proven to be the winner for Southampton. Verdict: Incorrect decision
Saido Berahino goal v Sunderland: This was comfortably the toughest decision for our panel to judge, with Berahino jumping into Costel Pantilimon and then kicking the ball away just as the Sunderland goalkeeper seemed to get his hands on it. It was suggested that there were two ‘half fouls’ and that Berahino did nothing to warrant being penalised, but a narrow three-to-two majority felt Pantilimon should have got the decision. Verdict: Incorrect decision
Etienne Capoue penalty appeal v Arsenal: This was a rather more straightforward call – Capoue was outside of the area and dived anyway. Verdict: Correct decision
Georginio Wijnaldum third goal v Norwich City: The new laws state a player should be given as offside if he makes an attempt to play the ball – even if he does not touch it. Moussa Sissoko undoubtedly did that as he jumped for Daryl Janmaat’s cross before Wijnaldum came in behind him to complete his hat-trick. Verdict: Incorrect decision
Stoke City penalty v Swansea City: This was another ‘won’ penalty, but there was still little doubt that a spot-kick had to be awarded when Ashley Williams brought down Bojan in the box with a knee to the back of the leg. Verdict: Correct decision
Jack Butland avoiding red card v Swansea City: This was a tough call for our panel to rule on. Butland undoubtedly won the ball with a sliding tackle on Andre Ayew, but would a defender have got away with a studs-first challenge? Probably not. However, although all agreed Butland was lucky to avoid any punishment, only one of five believed he should have seen red. Verdict: Correct decision (not to send him off)
For and Against
|4. Man Utd||Two||None||+2|
|6. Man City||Four||Three||+1|
|11. West Brom||One||One||0|
|12. Aston Villa||None||One||-1|
|14. Crystal Palace||One||Two||-1|
|17. West Ham||One||Three||-2|