Wolves: Disallowing late goal against West Ham was correct – panel

Wolves: Disallowing late goal against West Ham was correct – panel

12 April 2024 0 By Total Football News

The controversial decision to deny Wolves a stoppage-time equaliser against West Ham was correct, the Key Match Incidents Panel has ruled.

Wolves manager Gary O’Neil said it was “possibly the worst decision I have ever seen” and was charged by the Football Association for his post-match behaviour towards the officials.

Wolves chairman Jeff Shi released a statement asking if the video assistant referee (VAR) was “really what football wants or needs”.

Wolves captain Max Kilman headed home in the ninth minute of stoppage time in the game at Molineux on Saturday, but substitute Tawanda Chirewa was in an offside position. West Ham won 2-1.

Match of the Day presenter Gary Lineker and pundits Dion Dublin and Ian Wright were all critical of the decision.

However, the five-person independent panel, which reviews all ‘key’ decisions made by Premier League referees and VAR after each match-round, agreed unanimously with the officials’ decision of offside.

Video assistant referee (VAR) Tim Robinson recommended a review, after which official Tony Harrington ruled Chirewa was in West Ham goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski’s line of vision and the goal was ruled out.

The offside law states: “The attacking player is penalised for preventing an opponent from playing or being able to play the ball by clearly obstructing the goalkeeper’s line of vision.”

What did the panel say?

The panel’s written reasons, seen by BBC Sport, outline why the decision was reached.

They read: “Chirewa is clearly in an offside position, in the line of the goalkeeper’s vision and in close proximity to the goalkeeper, which clearly impacts his decision-making. The attacker is making contact with the goalkeeper up until the ball is headed towards goal, which restricts what the goalkeeper is able to do.”

It was also highlighted that the offside was consistent with similar decisions this season, including Manchester United’s 1-0 win at Burnley in September, when Jonny Evans had a goal disallowed after Rasmus Hojlund was ruled to be in an offside position and impeding Clarets goalkeeper James Trafford.

What did O’Neil say?

O’Neil was charged on Thursday for his behaviour “around the match officials’ changing room”.

“I wasn’t able to control my emotion well enough to get an explanation,” O’Neil said after the game. “The referee said he would rather not discuss it given how I was acting.

“If you are a Premier League official working at the highest level, I would be really disappointed if you thought that was offside.”

Wolves feel they have been on the wrong end of VAR decisions this season from their first game when referees’ body PGMOL admitted they should have had a late penalty after Andre Onana clattered into Sasa Kalajdzic late on in the 1-0 defeat at Manchester United.

Shi’s statement on Sunday also said: “When a goal is scored and not one person inside the stadium questions the validity of that goal, including both sets of players, coaches, fans and even the match officials themselves, it’s time to question whether someone remote disallowing that goal is really what football wants or needs.

“It is our sincere hope that the Premier League and PGMOL recognise the importance of addressing these concerns to uphold the integrity of the competition and demonstrate why the Premier League is regarded as the best in the world.”

Who is on the panel?

The panel is made up of three former players or coaches, one Premier League representative and one from the PGMOL.

It is intended to provide an independent retrospective view of decisions around major incidents that can be used as a guide to assess the performance of officials.

This article was originally posted on https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football/68796858