Newcastle were the only Premier League team to have an incorrect decision go against them 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.
Micah Richards and Federico Fernandez yellow cards: Tim Sherwood, in his final act as Aston Villa manager, claimed Fernandez would have been sent off had referee Neil Swarbrick seen his off-the-ball clash with Richards in the Swansea penalty area. Richards appeared to be the initial aggressor, though, bumping into Fernandez, seemingly after a comment from the visitors’ defender. Fernandez then shoved his head into Richards’ which could have earned him a red card but, even though Swarbrick missed the incident, four out of five of our panel felt a yellow card for both players was the most sensible course of action. Verdict: Correct decision
Wilfried Zaha penalty appeal v Leicester City: Booked for his troubles, Zaha’s appeals quite rightly fell on deaf ears when he knocked the ball past Christian Fuchs and jumped into the air to exaggerate the contact. All five of our panel felt referee Mike Dean got it right. Verdict: Correct decision
Christian Fuchs handball v Crystal Palace: The Eagles had a second late appeal for a penalty when Fuchs went to clear a ball into the box but completely missed, with the ball bouncing off the turf and onto his hand. Sorry Palace fans, but nobody felt this was a penalty either. Verdict: Correct decision
Odion Ighalo penalty appeal v Stoke City: Not that they needed it, but Watford appealed for a penalty in their 2-0 win at Stoke on Saturday when Ighalo went over under a challenge from Marc Wilson, but our panel was unaminous in ruling there was nowhere near enough in it to warrant a spot-kick. Verdict: Correct decision
Nemanja Matic sending-off v West Ham: Already on a booking, Matic was sent off just before half-time when he pulled back Cheikhou Kouyate out on the touchline. Jose Mourinho was clearly furious, apparently confronting referee Jon Moss in the tunnel, and two members of our panel agreed that it was a very soft second yellow card. The other three, however, felt Matic had only himself to blame for committing such a stupid challenge. Verdict: Correct decision
Gareth Bary sending-off v Arsenal: This one was rather more straightforward, Barry cleaning out Kieran Gibbs on the edge of the area to pick up a deserved second booking. Verdict: Correct decision
Newcastle penalty appeal v Sunderland: Lee Cattermole got away with two possible infringements, first hand-balling following Georginio Wijnaldum’s flick and then using his arm to stop the Newcastle midfielder in his tracks. Nobody felt the handball was worthy of a penalty, but two out of five felt he did impede Wijnaldum following that. The majority rules, though. Verdict: Correct decision
Sunderland penalty v Newcastle: Soon after that appeal, Sunderland did win a penalty when Fabricio Coloccini shoulder-barged Steven Fletcher away from Jermain Defoe’s through-ball towards goal. This was yet another decision which split the panel, but three out of five felt the fact that Coloccini made no attempt to play the ball justified referee Bobby Madley’s decision to point to the spot. Verdict: Correct decision
Fabricio Coloccini red card v Sunderland: Madley’s decision to show a red card to Coloccini was rather more contentious. Whether Fletcher would have got to the ball before Rob Elliott was the source of the debate, but ultimately only one out of five felt the double punishment of penalty and red card was correct. Verdict: Incorrect decision
Tottenham penalty v Bournemouth: Artur Boruc had a terrible afternoon in Bournemouth’s 5-1 defeat to Tottenham on Sunday. It all started when he raced out of his goal but was beaten to the ball by Harry Kane, who he brought down to concede a penalty. Verdict: Correct decision
Ander Herrera penalty appeal v Manchester City: Louis van Gaal was adamant that Manchester United should have had a penalty in Sunday’s dour Manchester derby, but four out of five of our panel judged this as an accidental coming together and nothing more, with only one arguing that the lack of intent was irrelevant. Verdict: Correct decision
Sadio Mane sending-off v Liverpool: Having scored Southampton’s equaliser in the 86th minute at Anfield, Mane went on to pick up two bookings in stoppage time. Despite the timing of them, it was hard to argue against either. Verdict: Correct decision
For and Against
|3. 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|