Ref Review: Matchday 22’s controversial decisions discussed

Date published: Monday 23rd January 2017 11:11

Our panel debates the big decisions in the Premier League over the weekend, with Raheem Sterling’s failure to win a penalty and Granit Xhaka’s red card under the microscope.

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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 matchday.

We’ll also decide on a weekly basis which side can consider themselves most fortunate and which was the easiest decision for a match official to make.


Manchester City penalty appeal v Tottenham

On such decisions league titles can be won and lost. With Pep Guardiola’s men leading 2-1 and just seconds before Tottenham went up the other end to equalise, Raheem Sterling was sent clean through by Aleksandar Korolov. The England man looked odds-on to score but just as he was about to pull the trigger in the box Kyle Walker shoved him in the back.

Inexplicably Sterling chose not to go down  – a fact bemoaned by Yaya Toure – and instead prodded a weak shot straight at Hugo Lloris.

Walker said afterwards “I was never going to get there so just had to do anything I could to stop him.”

t was a hugely contentious decision and one that Andre Marriner (yes folks, him again) got horribly wrong.

Verdict: Incorrect decision


Manchester City offside goal v Tottenham

New signing Gabriel Jesus thought he had made an immediate impact off the bench after slamming home very late on following a low cross from Kevin De Bruyne.

However the lively Brazilian was definitely offside before applying the finish then scampering to the corner flag in celebration. They say Jesus saves. Just not against Spurs it would seem!

Verdict: Correct decision


Everton goal v Crystal Palace

That’s four Premier League defeats on the spin now for Palace and one wonders whether top flight escape artist Sam Allardyce can go to the well again and rescue an Eagles team who have lost 14 of their 20 league games at home since the start of 2016?

Seamus Coleman blasted home the only goal of the game here after being teed up by new Toffees teen sensation Tom Davies three minutes from time, but replays confirmed Coleman should have been flagged for offside.

Palace are now in the bottom three and facing a real dogfight to retain their top flight status.

Verdict: Incorrect decision


Southampton disallowed goal v Leicester City

Having eventually wrapped up a 3-0 win boss Claude Puel won’t be losing too much sleep over this but Wes Morgan should have been credited with an own goal after turning Dusan Tadic’s cross into his own net with the score at 2-0.

The referee Michael Oliver inexplicably chalked it off citing the fact that Maya Yoshida was offside. Only it wasn’t a fact, as Yoshida was definitely level with Morgan.

Verdict: Incorrect decision


Southampton penalty v Leicester City

It’s all going wrong for Leicester, who are making a shocking fist of defending their Premier League title. A return of 21 points from 22 games is the joint worst tally ever for a reigning top flight champion in England, level with Ipswich Town from their lamentable 1962-63 season.

Morgan, who was an absolute rock for the Foxes last season, clumsily hauled down Shane Long in the box and can have few complaints.

Verdict: Correct decision


Arsenal penalty appeal v Burnley

Minutes before Shkodran Mustafi nodded home his first ever goal for Arsenal to finally bust belligerent Burnley’s brilliant rearguard action he thought he should have had a penalty. The big German was sent sprawling in the area by Andre Gray and it was a risky lunge by the Burnley forward who seemed to play the man and not the ball. We’ve definitely seen them given.

Verdict: Incorrect decision


Granit Xhaka red card v Burnley

Granit Xhaka: Must control his game

Let’s have it right. Xhaka loves a red card. This was his ninth in three seasons. But was it warranted? The Swiss overran the ball but then completely overcompensated as he tried to win it back as he flew in wildly on Steven Defour.

The studs were showing and he caught the Burnley man, just. Ref Jon Moss didn’t flinched as he brandished the red. Xhaka can have few complaints.

Verdict: Correct decision


Arsenal penalty v Burnley

What a finish at the Emirates. Just a few minutes after Burnley had levelled from the spot Arsenal got a spot kick of their own deep, deep into injury-time. Laurent Koscielny was clearly caught on the head by a high Ben Mee boot, but was Koscielny offside before having his senses scattered?

Whistler Moss pointed to the spot as Burnley players lost the plot all around him. Clarets boss Sean Dyche was seething while just before that Arsene Wenger got into some handbags in the tunnel with the fourth official for good measure. Scenes.

Verdict: Correct decision


Chelsea penalty appeal v Hull City

With the game goalless Pedro went down after tussling with new Tigers signing Omar Elabdellaoui. The Iberian and a few other Blues players asked the question somewhat half-heartedly, but ref Neil Swarbrick blew for a corner.

Verdict: Correct decision


Chelsea offside v Hull City

Diego Costa: Answers critics

Diego Costa was the name on everyone’s lips before this and with the world watching the Spanish international broke clear and slammed home past the Hull keeper in trademark style at Stamford Bridge.

The flag was up quickly though and while the decision was marginal replays showed the referee’s assistant got it bob on.

Verdict: Correct decision


Hull penalty appeal v Chelsea

Abel Hernandez showed a good turn of speed to get ahead of Marcos Alonso in the box and though moving away from goal, saw his heels kicked by a mistimed tackle by the Spaniard.

Seemed like an obvious one at first glance and even more so on replays.

Verdict: Incorrect decision


Team most likely to feel brasses off award

Manchester City

Pep Guardiola: Saw plenty of positives

The Citizens dominated for long spells against Spurs and would have had the match wrapped up had Mr Marriner spotted Walker’s blatant push on Sterling with the score at 2-1.

He didn’t, largely thanks to Sterling trying to stay on his feet, and seconds later Son punished then up he other end with the leveller.

The incident could be absolutely pivotal for both teams come the end of the season. Little wonder Guardiola was doing his nut in the technical area.

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Stonewall decision of the week

Jesus offside v Spurs

It would have made for some tidy headlines in the red tops but Manchester City’s new £27million man was definitely offside before ramming home and celebrating (very prematurely it turns out) at the Etihad.

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