Ref Review: Our verdict on all the weekend’s controversies

Date published: Monday 18th September 2017 8:34

There was plenty to discuss from the men in the middle this weekend with incorrect decisions galore, including in the games of joint-leaders Man City and Man Utd.

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 lucky and which was the easiest decision for a match official to make.


Sergio Aguero first goal v Watford

The Argentine goal machine scored a hat-trick at Vicarage Road but on reflection he was pretty lucky that his first was allowed to stand. An outrageously good ball whipped in by Kevin De Bruyne was arrowed home by Aguero but replays seemed to confirm he was marginally offside.

Verdict: Incorrect decision

Leicester City penalty v Huddersfield

John Moss won’t get many easier calls this season than his decision to award Leicester a penalty on Saturday. Andy King got away in the area and was taken down by Chris Lowe after first nipping the ball past him. A clear foul.

Verdict: Correct decision

Elias Kachunga offside v Leicester City

A potentially huge call in Huddersfield’s season this. With the score at 1-1 Kachunga thought he had put the Terriers back in front after getting the final touch on a Mathias Jorgensen effort. However it was chalked off by John Moss, much to the relief of Leicester. Boss David Wagner said afterwards that Kachunga was “clearly onside” and on reflection it does look a very harsh decision as it looked for all the world like Andy King had played him on.

Verdict: Incorrect decision


Ben Foster yellow card v West Ham

The West Brom custodian can count himself very lucky not to be dismissed after a moment of madness at the Hawthorns. He came flying out of his goal as Javier Hernandez looked like getting away and clearly took the Mexican out after Chicharito got to the ball first. Foster may not have been the last man but the challenge was dangerous and out of control. Despite this the card colour was only yellow.

Verdict: Incorrect decision


Tottenham penalty appeal v Swansea City

Spurs actually had three shouts for penalties during Saturday evening’s drab 0-0 draw with Swansea, the best of them being the first one when a probing ball hit the arm of Martin Olsson in the area. Olsson’s arm was not by his side and Mauricio Pochettino was furious afterward, claiming it was a “clear” penalty and to be fair he had a point.

Verdict: Incorrect decision


David Luiz yellow card v Arsenal

The Brazilian wasn’t happy to be carded as he attempted a spectacular scissor kick in the area at Stamford Bridge but only succeeded in connecting with the Laurent Koscielny. The Frenchmen went down like he’d been shot and whistler Michael Oliver produced the card. The rules state it’s a yellow but if that’s a booking how long before overhead kicks go the way of sliding tackles and are effectively banished from the game?

Verdict: Correct decision

David Luiz red card v Arsenal

Luiz would later see his original yellow overridden by a straight red after an ugly lunge on Sead Kolasinac by the touchline with time running out. It was a tackle borne of pure frustration with TV pundit Graeme Souness later described the challenge as a “leg breaker”.

Verdict: Correct decision

Mustafi offside v Chelsea

Shkodran Mustafi thought he had broken the deadlock at Stamford Bridge after planting a header past Thibaut Courtois. However replays clearly showed that two Arsenal players were in offside positions when Granit Xhaka played the cross into the box.

Verdict: Correct decision


Manchester United penalty appeal v Everton

The collective groans from the home fans at Old Trafford implied they were clearly nervous with their team just 1-0 up and Everton still looking every inch a threat when Jesse Lingard was accosted in the area by Ashley Williams. Williams got none of the ball and even though Lingard managed to get a shot off it was every inch a foul and should have been a spot kick.

Verdict: Incorrect decision

Manchester United penalty v Everton

Fans of the Red Devils didn’t have to wait too long for a penalty yet by the time it came the game was effectively over as a contest with United 3-0 up. Anthony Martial showed some superb dribbling ability to get into the area and his pace and power bamboozled poor Morgan Schneiderlin, who handled the ball while on the deck. The Everton man’s body language said it all. He didn’t even contest the decision, which was stonewall. On reflection the Toffees didn’t deserve to lose the match 4-0 but a late collapse played into United’s hands.

Verdict: Correct decision

Team most likely to feel brassed off award


Swansea brought Spurs’ upwards momentum clattering to a halt after parking the bus at Wembley. Tottenham won’t endure many more frustrating games this season and will feel aggrieved after having three penalty shouts turned down, with at least one of those a legitimate claim that was waved away by the irascible Mike Dean.


Stonewall decision of the week

David Luiz red card v Arsenal

Whether he was frustrated or not it was an idiotic decision by Mr Luiz to dive in with a lunge like that, particularly when he was already on a booking. In the event he got a straight red for a quite vicious lunge meaning he will cop a three match ban for his troubles.

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