Next season Brighton versus Burnley will be a classic case of VAR reversing a big decision… and Laurent Koscielny knew what he was doing
- Burnley’s Jeff Hendrick clearly handled as he tried to turn and chest the ball
- The reaction of a player gives you a clue as to whether an infringement occured
- If a referee has any doubt then we are always educated to award a goal-kick
The referees came under the microscope this weekend with Jeff Hendrick, Laurent Koscielny and Kurt Zouma all involved.
Sportsmail’s Mark Clattenburg is here to clear up the major decisions from a jam-packed weekend.
The referees came under the microscope this weekend with Laurent Koscielny involved
Come next season, the penalty incidents during Brighton versus Burnley will be a classic case of VAR reversing a big decision.
Burnley’s Jeff Hendrick clearly handled as he tried to turn and chest the ball inside his own area. Referee Stuart Atwell has either lost concentration or was convinced that Hendrick used his chest, for he’ll also be thinking that a player is unlikely to deliberately handle in a situation where he does not need to.
Burnley broke and striker Ashley Barnes went down under the challenge of goalkeeper Mat Ryan. It is a penalty, Ryan did not take the ball and he brought Barnes down by entering his path. There was a slight delay in awarding the spot-kick as Atwell waited to see if striker Chris Wood finished the loose ball, which he did not. A penalty and a yellow card for Ryan was the correct call, as it was a genuine attempt to win the ball.
However, next season we will see this entire passage of play reviewed and play will be brought back with Brighton awarded a penalty for the Hendrick handball. Ryan’s yellow card will also be rescinded.
Burnley’s Jeff Hendrick clearly handled as he tried to turn and chest the ball inside his own area
Sometimes, as a referee, the reaction of a player can give you a clue as to whether an infringement has occurred.
Take Arsenal’s Laurent Koscielny at Huddersfield after he had blocked Jason Puncheon’s shot inside the area. He was trying very hard to show everyone that the ball had hit him in the groin area, when clearly it had struck his arm.
Was it a penalty? It will split opinion because you can argue that the defender’s arm was in a natural position.
However, I believe Koscielny knew what he was doing. His arms started high to protect his face – which I can accept – but as he turns his right arm comes out to make himself bigger, and that blocks the shot. It should have been a penalty.
Laurent Koscielny blocked Jason Puncheon’s (centre) shot inside the area at Huddersfield
Everton’s Kurt Zouma was sent off for a second yellow card after the full-time whistle at Watford because of dissent.
His gripe was clearly with the Watford winner, which came after Lee Probert awarded a corner even though it was unclear if goalkeeper Jordan Pickford had touched the ball.
Let us make one thing clear – if a referee has any doubt in cases such as this, then we are always educated to award a goal-kick. Why? If you give a goal-kick and it is later proven to be the incorrect call, everyone will soon forget about it because the consequences of the decision are likely to be minimal.
However, incorrectly award a corner and it leads to a goal, they will forever be showing replays and highlighting the mistake.
As for the second yellow, Zouma must have said something out of turn because I have known Probert for many years and he does not caution many players for dissent. Also, Zouma ran a long way to make his point in the face of the referee and, knowing he was already on a yellow, he cannot complain after being sent off.
Everton’s Kurt Zouma (left) was sent off for a second yellow card after the full-time whistle