Liverpool deserved penalty for “rugby tackle” but ref should’ve spotted it without VAR, says Mark Halsey

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Former Premier League referee Mark Halsey says Liverpool deserved their penalty against Watford for a “rugby tackle” by Cucho Hernandez on Diogo Jota.

The Reds won 2-0 at home to the Hornets, with goals from Jota and Fabinho’s penalty giving Jurgen Klopp’s side all three points to temporarily send them top of the table.

Speaking to CaughtOffside, Halsey criticised referee Stuart Atwell for failing to spot the incident the first time, with the spot kick only given after a review from VAR.

“Looking at the Liverpool-Watford game, I’ve seen a few comments regarding the penalty Liverpool got towards the end of the game,” Halsey said.

“In my view, it’s a clear penalty, it’s a clear holding offence by Cucho on Diogo Jota, Cucho’s not even looking at the ball, he’s pulled him down like it’s a rugby tackle!

“I was surprised Stuart Atwell never saw this in real time, because he was looking in that direction. In those situations some referees spend too much time looking at the ball, but when does the ball commit an offence? You’ve got to keep focused on those danger zones and what’s going on there. VAR were correct in recommending the review.

“The only thing I would say about that decision, however, is we’ve seen similar offences quite often this season that didn’t go to review, so we’re once again seeing too much inconsistency with VAR.”

More Stories Cucho Hernandez Diogo Jota Fabinho Mark Halsey

1 Comment

  1. Stuart or whatever he’ called is a good ref but at times he chooses to ignore sm crucial part of the game knowingfuly well that he could have done smthing but anyway Liverpool got the win and a deserved 3point that’s crucial.

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