Dermot Gallagher dissects the big flashpoints from the weekend’s action and explains why he thought Newcastle should have been awarded a penalty against Chelsea when Jacob Murphy went down in the area under a challenge from Trevoh Chalobah.

Chelsea 1-0 Newcastle

INCIDENT: Newcastle’s Jacob Murphy goes down in the Chelsea area under pressure from Trevoh Chalobah. Referee David Coote awarded a corner and, after a check, VAR John Brooks decided not to send him to the pitchside monitor. Should Newcastle have been awarded a penalty?

VERDICT: Penalty.

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Chelsea’s win over Newcastle in the Premier League.

DERMOT SAYS: Chalobah grabs his shirt, trips him and shoves him. I think VAR looked at the upper body instead of the lower body.

The referee gives a corner but Chalobah doesn’t play the ball. It should have been a goal kick or a penalty. By the referee giving a corner, he’s told everybody that he thinks Chalobah’s played the ball. Therefore, VAR could have said, ‘He didn’t play the ball, you might want to look at this’. If the referee had gone to have a look, he’d have given a penalty.

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Newcastle head coach Eddie Howe reflects on a disappointing loss against Chelsea and says that he couldn’t understand why Trevoh Chalobah’s pull on Jacob Murphy wasn’t reviewed by VAR.

Sue Smith: “It’s the most blatant penalty ever. The first was the tug on the shirt and then the collision with the legs, it was a double foul.”

Stephen Warnock: “It’s another case of a referee being let down by the VAR assistant. We’re saying put the power on the referees to go to the screen but if they’re not going to then they need to be backed up by VAR to say it was a penalty. It was one of the clearest penalties we’ve seen in the Premier League.”

Eddie Howe was convinced Newcastle should have had a penalty for Trevoh Chalobah's tug on Jacob Murphy

Image: Eddie Howe was convinced Newcastle should have had a penalty for Trevoh Chalobah’s tug on Jacob Murphy

Havertz: It was reckless but not serious foul play

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Dermot Gallagher agrees with VAR’s decision to not give Kai Havertz a red card for an elbow on Dan Burn in Chelsea’s game against Newcastle

INCIDENT: Chelsea’s Kai Havertz and Newcastle centre-back Dan Burn both jump to win a header. Havertz’s left elbow connects with Burn’s head and the forward is shown a yellow card. VAR check deicides the incident didn’t require further punishment, but should Havertz have been sent off?

VERDICT: Correct decision, yellow card.

DERMOT SAYS: I agree with the decision for a number of reasons. Both players’ arms are up, they’re both challenging for the ball and there’s inevitably going to be a collision. The key for me is if somebody throws an elbow in malice, they’re going to clench their fist and force impact. Havertz doesn’t clench his fist, it’s almost a flailing arm. It does catch Burn, it’s a yellow card. It’s a foul, it’s a reckless challenge but it’s not a brutal, malicious challenge or serious foul play.

Kai Havertz was booked for this collision with Dan Burn

Image: Kai Havertz was booked for this collision with Dan Burn

Stephen Warnock: “I didn’t think it was a red card because Havertz’s eyes were firmly fixed on the ball the whole time. Not once did he look at Burn. I think the reason Burn reacted so strongly to it is because it hurts.”

Sue Smith: “I didn’t think it was a red card either. You use your arms for leverage, Burn was doing the same, it was just that his arm didn’t hit Havertz and it was the other way around.”

Brighton 0-2 Liverpool

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Dermot Gallagher says that VAR got it wrong when it did not recommend Mike Dean take a closer look at Brighton goalkeeper Robert Sanchez’s foul on Liverpool’s Luis Diaz and should have resulted in a red card.

INCIDENT: Liverpool forward Luis Diaz latches on to Joel Matip’s pass and heads the ball past on-rushing goalkeeper Robert Sanchez and into the goal. Sanchez’s left leg collides with the chest of Diaz. The goals stands but after a VAR check, Sanchez is not punished. Should the goalkeeper have been sent off?

VERDICT: Red card.

DERMOT SAYS: It was a red card. You don’t want to see players flying through the air like that. What it did do was expose a lot of the vagaries of VAR in so much as it’s not the VAR protocol, it’s the operative. The referee can only be sent to the screen if the VAR operative thinks it’s a red card. Because the operative thought it was a yellow card, it can’t go anywhere.

Brighton keeper Robert Sanchez avoided a red card for his challenge on Liverpool's Luis Diaz.

Image: Brighton keeper Robert Sanchez avoided a red card for his challenge on Liverpool’s Luis Diaz.

Should Mike Dean, the on-field referee, have decided it was a red card?

DERMOT SAYS: I’m not sure he saw it the way we did, the best view is from behind the goal. I think he sees the collision but Diaz’s body shields where the collision is. The best view was VAR’s view.

Sue Smith: “It was absolutely a red card. I was really surprised when it went to VAR they didn’t send Mike Dean to have a look at it. You only had to see it once from that angle behind the goal to see i’s endangering Diaz.”

Stephen Warnock: “I couldn’t believe it, I was in complete shock, the reason being you only have to look at Diaz’s body and where Sanchez hits him. How is that not endangering a player? My other concern is that two referees can’t see that.”

Liverpool's Luis Diaz scores their side's first goal of the game during the Premier League match at the AMEX Stadium, Brighton. Picture date: Saturday March 12, 2022.

Image: Liverpool’s Luis Diaz scores their side’s first goal of the game at Brighton.

INCIDENT: Alisson catches a long ball forward and almost carries it out of his area. Play continues but should he have been penalised for handball?

Verdict: Correct decision, no handball.

DERMOT SAYS: Alisson is so clever because the ball never leaves the penalty area, only the goalkeeper does. That’s great presence of mind.

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Liverpool’s win at Brighton in the Premier League.

INCIDENT: Brighton centre-back Lewis Dunk goes down in the Liverpool penalty area after tussling with Diogo Jota. No penalty is awarded and play continues.

VERDICT: Correct decision, no penalty.

DERMOT SAYS: Dunk goes into Jota to make the first contact. As he comes away, he’s pulling at Jota which makes it look like he’s shoved him down.

INCIDENT: Naby Keita’s shot hits Yves Bissouma’s raised left arm. A penalty is awarded to Liverpool for handball, but should the Brighton midfielder have been shown a yellow card which would have been his second of the match?

VERDICT: Correct decision, penalty and no yellow card.

DERMOT SAYS: Not every handball is a yellow card – that’s a myth. His arm’s up but just because he’s on a yellow card doesn’t mean his next offence is going to be a red card.

Arsenal 2-0 Leicester

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Arsenal’s win over Leicester in the Premier League.

INCIDENT: Thomas Partey heads at goal, the ball hits the right hand of Leicester’s Caglar Soyuncu and then Luke Thomas clears off the line. After a VAR check, a penalty is awarded and Soyuncu is shown a yellow card. Should the centre-back have been sent off instead?

VERDICT: Correct decision. Penalty, yellow card – no red.

DERMOT SAYS: There’s no doubt the ball touched Soyuncu’s hand. The referee had to be switched on because when he went to monitor people were saying it was a red card because he’s stopped the ball from going into the net with his hand. He didn’t, the ball brushed Soyuncu’s hand, it wouldn’t have taken much speed off the ball but Thomas cleared it off the line.

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FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from Arsenal’s win over Leicester in the Premier League.

INCIDENT: Alexandre Lacazette hesitated in his penalty run-up before he scored. Leicester goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel thought the striker had stopped on his approach to the ball which is illegal.

VERDICT: Goal – Lacazette did not stop in his run-up

DERMOT SAYS: Lacazette is clever, he stalls his run but he doesn’t stop. The law is you can’t stop your momentum totally. Once you get to the ball you have to kick it, you can’t stop.

Stephen Warnock: “It’s borderline, it’s very close. It’s very clever from Lacazette and you can see why Schmeichel is appealing for it.”

Sue Smith: “In that little stutter, he’s still moving so he gets away with it.”