Former Premier League referee Dermot Gallagher believes that Paul Tierney was right to not award a penalty or issue a red card for Harry Maguire’s block on Jamaal Lascelles.
Maguire’s arm was lifted towards Lascelles’ chest and he glanced over his shoulder before contacting the Newcastle defender.
There were plenty of calls on social media for VAR to review the incident and send Maguire off, however, Maguire was adjudged to have done nothing wrong. And Gallagher agrees with that assessment.
Sky Sports’ Ref Watch asked Gallagher whether Maguire’s challenge should be a penalty, a red card or nothing?
“I think nothing,” he replied. “I think the defender is blocking off. I think the ball is played in and the goalkeeper’s challenge, that’s what the referee is focusing on.
“The VAR in play actually checked that incident and said to the referee who was checking it and felt the same, that Maguire was blocking off Lascelles, as players do in the penalty area and said, ‘play on’, and I think that’s the right decision.”
Sue Smith, however, thought it was a little naughty.
“It’s a little bit naughty, from Harry Maguire. Yes, as a defender, I know that you put your arms out to see where the defender (Lascelles) is, but it’s the fact that he looks at him first and gets the connection. So, I think he’s actually got away with one there.”
Stephen Warnock, meanwhile, admitted that Maguire got a little lucky, but also praised the clever defending.
“He is a little bit lucky, but from a defender’s point of view, it’s what you’d try and do in the penalty box. Not raise your arm too high and be too aggressive, but you’re trying to protect your goalkeeper and block him off.
“I just think he’s got away with this one.”