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Former top referee rules on that Leeds v Newcastle controversial incident

10 months ago

Dermot Gallagher reviews controversial decisions in the Premier League after each round of games, on behalf of Sky Sports, and has given his call on this  Leeds v Newcastle match incident.

Newcastle United on the attack and when the ball comes into the box, Liam Cooper challenges Callum Wilson.

Steve Bruce and the Newcastle players looking for a penalty but referee Simon Hooper plays on, plus there is no VAR review.

Dermot Gallagher has no doubts on this one.

The former top referee declaring: ‘I don’t know how this was not a penalty. I fully expected it to be given.’

As for the VAR review that Newcastle hoped for but never came: ‘But if the referee had been referred to the screen, he would have reversed his decision and given a penalty.’

With the score 1-1 at the time, whilst Newcastle were totally dominated for most of the match, Steve Bruce claimed that penalty decision if given, could have been a real game changer.

That will always be an unknown but certainly it was a decision that if is your team, then you would hope to get a penalty.

Whilst the most baffling this is VAR, we see it used so often and often for the most unnecessary / flippant of reasons, yet surely this is the kind of challenge / incident that the video reviews were brought in to help with.

Dermot Gallagher speaking to Sky Sports:


“Newcastle striker Callum Wilson goes to ground in the area under the challenge of Leeds defender Liam Cooper, who comes through the back of the man before getting the faintest of touches on the ball.

“Referee Simon Hooper decides not to award a penalty on the field and Var does not intervene.”

Dermot Gallagher verdict:

“I don’t know how this was not a penalty.

“I fully expected it to be given.

“If he gets the ball, he still gets the man, and I don’t think he even got the ball.

“All I can think is that the referee thought Callum Wilson had knocked himself off balance while stretching to reach the ball.

“But if the referee had been referred to the screen, he would have reversed his decision and given a penalty.

“VAR must have taken the same stance as the referee, or asked him to explain what he had seen.

“The only thing I can presume is that the referee thought Wilson was slipping before he went down.

“If you look at the images there is a case for that, and on that basis VAR may have sided with the on-field referee’s decision.

“VAR is not there to determine whether the referee was right or wrong, it’s there to decide whether they have made a serious error – a clear and obvious error – and on this occasion they thought he hadn’t.”

Stats from BBC Sport:

Leeds 5 Newcastle 2 – Wednesday 16 December 6pm



Hendrick 26, Clark 65


Bamford 35, Rodrigo 61, Dallas 77, Alioski 85,  Harrison 88

(Half-time stats in brackets)

Possession was Leeds 69% (70%) Newcastle 31% (30%)

Total shots were Leeds 25 (14) Newcastle 10 (4)

Shots on target were Leeds 10 (4) Newcastle 4 (2)

Corners were Leeds 7 (2) Newcastle 4 (0)

Referee: Simon Hooper

Newcastle United:

Darlow, Murphy, Fernandez, Clark, Lewis, Hayden, S Longstaff, Hendrick (Krafth 62), Fraser (Almiron 75), Joelinton (Gayle 74), Wilson

Unused Subs:

Gillespie, M Longstaff, Carroll, Shelvey

Crowd: 00,000

(Match Report – For all Newcastle United got beat last night, it was the best game I have seen this season… Read HERE)

(Sunday morning defending? It’s Sunday morning management Steve Bruce needs to worry about – Read HERE)

(Steve Bruce relies on Amazon Prime delay with laughable claims on Leeds match – Read HERE)

(Marcelo Bielsa verdict on Leeds hammering Newcastle : ‘This was a deserved victory’ – Read HERE)

(3 Positives and 3 Negatives from Leeds 5 Newcastle 2 – Read HERE)

(Why Steve Bruce needs to play FIFA – Read HERE)

(Leeds 5 Newcastle 2 – Match ratings and comments on all the NUFC players – Read HERE)

(Leeds 5 Newcastle 2 – Instant NUFC fan/writer reaction to Wednesday’s hammering – Read HERE)


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