Following the controversial Premier League game between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Manchester United, referees Simon Hooper, Michael Salisbury and Richard West have been unable to officiate any matches next weekend. The decision came after a controversial incident during the game on Monday, when Wolves were denied a penalty appeal in the hot minutes of the game.
The incident occurred during injury time when Manchester United goalkeeper Andre Onana collided with Wolves striker Sasa Kalajdzic while attempting to make a cross. Despite the collision that left Kalajdzic on the field, field referee Simon Hooper saw no foul and allowed play to continue.
Video assistant referees (VARs), Michael Salisbury and Richard West, also did not intervene, complying with the directive to intervene only when there was a clear and obvious error. The match ended in a 1–0 win for Manchester United, much to Wolves’ annoyance as the penalty was not awarded.
Wolves manager Gary O’Neil expressed displeasure with the use of VAR in such circumstances, seeing it as a gray area in the sport. He also revealed that Jon Moss, the Premier League referee manager, had personally apologized for the negligence.
“Jon Moss said it was a blatant punishment and should have been given – fair play for him, he’s sorry,” O’Neil told reporters quoted by Reuters.
“…But let’s be fair to Jon for coming out and saying it was a clear and obvious error – he couldn’t believe the on-field referee didn’t allow it and couldn’t believe the VAR didn’t intervene. card.
“Actually, it probably made me feel worse, because you know you’re right. I was told firsthand that they didn’t think it was an obvious and obvious mistake.”
This incident has sparked discussions about the accountability of referees and VAR’s effectiveness in ensuring fairness. As the football community awaits the next matches, the aftermath of this incident serves as a reminder of the important role referees play in the sport.
August 15, 2023