Our panel debate two highly-dubious decisions in Leicester’s win over Newcastle, while two massive mistakes in Southampton’s victory at Stoke also come up for discussion.
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 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.
With the FA Cup quarter-finals taking place this weekend, it was a slimmed down Premier League fixture list with only four matches for our panel to review….
Modou Barrow penalty appeal v Bournemouth: The Gambian winger scored an excellent goal against the Cherries, but felt he also should have won a spot-kick when a challenge from Charlie Daniels sent him tumbling in the area. Although the referee decided to wave play on, replays showed a foul was definitely committed although the tackle was made inches outside the area anyway. Verdict: Correct decision (not to award the penalty)
Marvin Emnes penalty appeal v Bournemouth: The Swans had a second penalty appeal of the afternoon waved away in the second half when Swans sub Emnes saw a goalbound volley catch Daniels’ hand. But with the ball striking the full-back at close quarters, and with his hand not considered to be in an unnatural position, the ref was once again correct to wave play on. Verdict: Correct decision
Sergio Aguero penalty appeal v Norwich: The City frontman saw a mazy run towards goal curtailed by Norwich defender Timm Klose, with the Argentinian tumbling down inside the area. City made appeals for the spot-kick, but the referee awarded a free-kick only after correctly ruling the challenge to have been made inches outside the box. Verdict: Correct decision
Dusan Tadic penalty appeal v Stoke: The Serbian playmaker latched onto a throughball to bear down on the Stoke goal, but after nudging the ball past Jack Butland, was brought down by the Potters keeper’s outstretched leg. Ref Lee Mason awarded a goalkick after presumably deciding no contact had been made, but oddly, also decided against booking the player for simulation too. One look of Butland’s face straight afterwards told you all you needed to know. Verdict: Incorrect decision
Sadio Mane red card v Stoke: The Saints forward had entered the field as a second-half sub at the Britannia but was not able to complete the match when, challenging Erik Pieters for a high ball, was adjudged to have caught the Dutch full-back with an elbow. The red look harsh on first viewing, and even worse after replays, and it completed a bad afternoon at the office for ref Mason. It was also no surprise to see Saints appeal. Verdict: Incorrect decision
Jamie Vardy penalty appeal v Newcastle: The Foxes striker saw his run towards goal ended after a being brought down by challenge by Daryl Janmaat, and despite taking a heavy tumble in the box, the referee waved play on. Our panel decided that the Newcastle full-back had got his shoulder in front of the Foxes frontman and the challenge was nothing more sinister than a tangle of legs. Verdict: Correct decision
Foul on Riyad Mahrez in build-up to Leicester’s winner: Newcastle’s makeshift left-back Jack Colback felt like the referee had fallen for a dive when Mahrez took a tumble under his challenge on the touchline. Although a good 45 yards from goal, the free-kick that Mahrez then swung over led to Leicester’s winner – and our panel agrees that the United man was unfortunate. Verdict: Incorrect decision
Possible Vardy offside during Shinji Okazaki’s winner: The rule book states that while Vardy was initially offside before heading the ball back across goal for Okazaki’s acrobatic winner, because of Steven Taylor header, it became “a new phase of play”, and was therefore then deemed to be onside. Verdict: Correct decision
Moussa Sissoko penalty appeal v Leicester: As Newcastle pressed for an equaliser, French midfielder Sissoko fired a powerful volley goalwards that appeared to catch Wes Morgan’s arm as he turned his back on the effort. With the shot heading goalwards and Morgan’s arm/ elbow in an unnatural position and preventing it hitting the target, Newcastle can quite rightly feel aggrieved for a second time in this match. Verdict: Incorrect decision
For and Against
|1. Man Utd||Eight||One||+7|
|5. Man City||Nine||Five||+4|
|= Aston Villa||Six||Two||+4|
|= Crystal Palace||Three||Five||-2|
|= West Brom||Six||Nine||-3|
|19. West Ham||Four||Ten||-6|