Former Premier League referee Dermot Gallagher breaks down the flashpoints from the weekend’s action, including Manchester United midfielder Casemiro’s straight red card against Crystal Palace.
Manchester United 2-1 Crystal Palace
INCIDENT: After a lengthy VAR review, Casemiro was sent off after a melee between the two sets of players with the Manchester United midfielder putting both arms around the neck of Crystal Palace’s Will Hughes.
DERMOT’s Verdict: “I think Casemiro should be sent off.”
NERMOT SAYS: “It’s a referee’s worst nightmare, there’s so much going on, isn’t it? It’s impossible to be a policeman [it] the same. I think what you need to do is watch what you can see and tell your assistants to look out for it.
“If you watch Scott Ledger (the assistant referee), he tries to check the players, then he goes back to get a better view of something else.
“Casemiro is actually behind his back (at this point) that’s the problem with so much going on. I think VAR got Casemiro and people are asking why Ayew didn’t get him. I think there’s only so much he can to seize the moment.
“I think Casemiro is a red card. The reason I say that is because you can’t forgive a player who puts both hands around someone’s neck.
“I think the VAR looked at it and suggested it’s a red card. There are other things – is someone a peacemaker or an attacker? I think the FA will look at it today and it’s up to them to see if they need to process anything else.
“People say it looks different from one angle to another. Sue (Smith) and I were talking before the program about the (Joao) Cancelo incident last year and I felt the problem was that they focused on an angle that wasn’t definitive .than an angle that was convincing.
“I think it’s the same here. I don’t need to focus on an angle that isn’t decisive because I have an angle that I believe is decisive.
“When I see a player with two hands around a player’s neck, I can’t condone that and say it’s not a red card offense because if I do that then what I’m doing is giving a player permission every week to I think this is acceptable. I don’t think this is acceptable.
“I think the angle that Andre (Marriner, the referee) showed is decisive. I think it’s a red card. I think that will come up this morning – it was impossible for the two of them there to control it.”
Sue Smith: “I wasn’t sure about that and I think I looked at two things. I look at Will Hughes’ reaction and it was like ‘go away’ – it wasn’t like he thought someone had two hands around his neck.
“And then I looked at the other angle where it looks like he’s just got him around the shirt, but I think when you slow something down, which they did and they showed that angle and stopped it at that angle, it looks awful.
“I think if you’re a referee who’s going to do that, you’re going to think 100 percent it’s a layoff. In real time, I don’t think it looks that bad.”
Jay Bothroyd: “I think first of all, it’s really playground stuff. Casemiro also has big black gloves and I don’t think that helped him. It looks even worse with his hands looking even bigger. Yes, his hands are around yours (Hughes’) neck, but it’s his lower neck. But according to the letter of the law he’s got his hands up, he’s put his hands around somebody’s neck, so I think you should kick him out.”
INCIDENT: Manchester United conceded an early penalty against Crystal Palace for Hughes’ handball. Referee Andre Marriner sent to monitor with VAR – did he get it right?
DERMOT’s Verdict: “I think it’s a penalty.”
NERMOT SAYS: “His hand is way above his shoulder. It’s bad luck, but that’s what the law says. His hand is clearly up.”
Tottenham 1-0 Manchester City
INCIDENT: Tottenham finished Sunday’s win over Manchester City with 10 men after Christian Romero picked up two yellow cards. Does he have a dispute with any of his bookings?
DERMOT’S JOURNAL: “It was clearly two holds.”
NERMOT SAYS: “It was clearly a yellow card for his tackle on Erling Haaland. He came in too aggressively. After Jack Grealish, again there was no attempt to play the ball.”
Wolves 3-0 Liverpool
INCIDENT: Liverpool were disappointed not to be awarded a penalty for handball by Wolves defender Max Kilman.
DERMOT’S JOURNAL: “It’s clearly leaving his body.”
NERMOT SAYS: “His arms are tight and he’s coming off his thigh. He’s trying to make his body smaller, not bigger, so I don’t think you’ll ever get punished for that.”
Brighton 1-0 Bournemouth
INCIDENT: Bournemouth arguably should have been awarded a penalty against Brighton after Pervis Estupinan pushed Dango Ouattara. VAR checked it but it was not given. Does this surprise you?
DERMOT’S JOURNAL: “I don’t think it’s a penalty.”
NERMOT SAYS: “There was no way the VAR could have interfered with it since the on-field referee didn’t give it. I think it’s too strong for him.
“It goes shoulder to shoulder. I don’t think it’s a penalty, the referee didn’t think it was a penalty, so there was no way the VAR would ever intervene.”
Jay Bothroyd: “I think it’s a penalty. The defender used his body to push him out of the way. I don’t think he has any intention of playing the ball.”
Sue Smith: “I was surprised it wasn’t a penalty.”
Everton 1-0 Arsenal
INCIDENT: Could Arsenal have had a penalty for Neil Maupai’s challenge on Gabriel in the second half against Everton?
DERMOT’s Verdict: “It’s not a penalty.”
NERMOT SAYS: “It’s clumsy but I think it beats Maupay as far as it goes. I thought the referee had a really good game on that one.”
Jay Bothroyd: “I think it’s difficult because as Gabriel tried to go around him, Maupai cut his leg. But I don’t think it’s a penalty.”
Sue Smith: “I agree. I don’t think it’s a penalty. He’s used his body well.”
Aberdeen 3-1 Motherwell
INCIDENT: Aberdeen’s Matty Kennedy is booked for handball and Motherwell score the resulting penalty, but the initial effort hits him over the T-Shirt line?
DERMOT’s Verdict: “I think he’s unlucky.”
NERMOT SAYS: “It’s so high on his arm, but what I would ask is why is he taking that kind of action and giving the ref that decision to make. I think he’s hitting him in the safe zone, but the ref didn’t.”
Hearts 3-1 Dundee United
INCIDENT: Dundee United’s Ryan Edwards was sent off for a solid tackle against Hearts after a lengthy VAR review. Did you think it was a red card?
DERMOT’s Verdict: “I think it’s a continuation.”
NERMOT SAYS: “He follows and catches him. Once he’s sent to VAR for a tackle like that, I thought he was going to go. It wasn’t a particularly big challenge, but he was very strong.”
Swansea 3-4 Birmingham
INCIDENT: Swansea’s players were furious when Birmingham were awarded an early penalty for a foul on Reda Handra by goalkeeper Andy Fisher.
DERMOT’S JOURNAL: “I think Khadra is lucky.”
NERMOT SAYS: “He gets the ball so far. He sees the keeper coming and collides with him. I think the referee gives a penalty and the striker is very, very grateful. For me, he’s very, very lucky to get it.”
Sheffield Wednesday 1-0 Plymouth
INCIDENT: The assistant took ages to flag Sheffield Wednesday’s George Byers offside in their win over Plymouth. There were suggestions that the officials saw the replay on the big screen and took the decision from that. What did you understand?
DERMOT’S JOURNAL: “I think it’s offside.”
NERMOT SAYS: “I think Lee Gregory affects the game from an offside position and affects the goalkeeper. The goalkeeper doesn’t know if he’s going to touch the ball and blocks him. The referee and the linesman decide between themselves that it’s offside and I think it’s the right call” .