Former referee Dermot Gallagher dissects the flashpoints from the weekend’s Premier League action, including a controversial offside call at Goodison Park.
‘VAR correctly disallows Martinelli goal’
INCIDENT: Arsenal forward Gabriel Martinelli sees his first-half strike at Everton ruled out for offside by VAR.
WHAT GARY NEVILLE SAID ON SUPER SUNDAY: “Even I’m a little confused, he looked well behind. There looks to be a little bit of guess work with the blue line, I have to say. Sometimes you get a feeling a decision isn’t right and that one didn’t feel right.”
The IFAB guidelines for distinguishing between ‘deliberate play’ and ‘deflection’
“A player in an offside position receiving the ball from an opponent who deliberately plays the ball, including by deliberate handball, is not considered to have gained an advantage, unless it was a deliberate save by any opponent.”
‘Deliberate play’ is defined as ‘when a player has control of the ball’. In this instance, it must therefore be concluded that Beto was not in control and therefore the touch cannot be considered a deliberate attempt to play the ball.”
DERMOT SAYS: “It is a good call as Eddie Nketiah is offside, he starts in an offside position, then comes back. As Gabriel plays the ball up, it strikes Beto.
“I do not think there is any way you can say he would play the ball back like that, so therefore he is in an offside position and it goes to Martinelli, and he scores.
Kelly Cates’ explanation
“Just to clear a couple of things up, Gabriel plays the ball, it’s deflected off Beto, PGMOL are saying this is not seen as a deliberate action, so the play doesn’t reset which means Eddie Nketiah is offside.
“It’s a trailing leg, they’ve drawn the lines, I know Gary [Neville] was suggesting by eye it isn’t absolutely clear, but these lines are incredibly well calibrated, down to the tiniest detail.
“It’s not a decision we would have seen pre-VAR, but by letter of the law it is the correct one.”
“And the VAR then correctly disallows it. If you look at Beto, he has gone to close him down, it flies off his shin, because it is played at speed, it goes to Nketiah and you can see he is offside and I think it is a good call.”
‘Ref right not to give Doucoure penalty’
INCIDENT: Everton’s Abdoulaye Doucoure not given a penalty after William Saliba challenge.
DERMOT SAYS: “Not for me. He pushed the ball too far.
“There’s a bit of contact but Saliba pulled his leg away. Not a penalty.”
‘Gusto didn’t deserve penalty at Bournemouth’
INCIDENT: Chelsea’s Malo Gusto not given penalty after collision with Bournemouth’s Lloyd Kelly.
DERMOT SAYS: “I would have been very disappointed if a penalty was given for this.
“It’s minimal contact at best – and not in the penalty area.”
‘Ref must have been upset by what McBurnie said’
INCIDENT: Oli McBurnie given second yellow card for protesting at referee Peter Bankes.
DERMOT SAYS: “For a referee to send somebody off for something they’ve said to them, it can’t have been something nice.
“It’s not always what you say to a referee but how you say it.
“He’s said something that he’s found very upsetting.”
‘There is not enough to give Spurs a penalty’
INCIDENT: Chris Basham brings down James Maddison in the box, but Spurs are not awarded a penalty against Sheffield United.
DERMOT SAYS: “For me, no, minimal contact. How it puts him down like that, I do not know because the contact is on the left ankle and he throws himself on the right.
“I do not think there is enough to give a penalty. What they are very strong on this season is the contact has to be of consequence.”
‘Wilson blocked Flekken arm – right call’
INCIDENT: Callum Wilson goal disallowed for foul on Mark Flekken
DERMOT SAYS: “I thought the goalkeeper flapped at the ball but Callum Wilson actually blocks his arm.
“It was a good spot.”
‘Some refs will give it, some won’t’
INCIDENT: Brentford boss Thomas Frank wants an apology after Newcastle were awarded a second-half penalty at St James’ Park for a foul by Mark Flekken on Anthony Gordon.
DERMOT SAYS: “The referee [Craig Pawson] did not think so. It is very interesting as it took so long to give it that it was obvious the assistant had given it.
“You can see from the assistant’s angle that he thought the goalkeeper had put his leg in and Gordon goes over it. It all depends on whether he thinks the goalkeeper has got him.
“He does not get the ball, that is the only certainty. I think if you split referees, some will give it and some will not.”
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