Home Cody Gakpo Ex-Ref Shocked No Red Card for Gakpo Challenge

Ex-Ref Shocked No Red Card for Gakpo Challenge

Ex-Ref Shocked No Red Card for Gakpo Challenge

Former referee Dermot Gallagher has admitted that Aston Villa defender Tyrone Mings was fortunate to escape with just a yellow card for his challenge on Cody Gakpo during the 1-1 draw between Aston Villa and Liverpool. Mings had caught the midriff of Gakpo with a high boot at the end of the first half, leaving clear stud marks on the forward. Manager Jurgen Klopp said after the game that he was ‘surprised’ Mings did not receive further punishment from referee John Brooks following a VAR check and joked that the scars on Gakpo’s chest mimicked the logo of a “very famous brand.” On the Sky Sports News ‘Ref Watch’ show, Gallagher offered his take on the incident, saying that it should have been a red card. He explained that it was face-to-face and Mings had brought his boot up after he had played the ball. Gallagher was then asked by former Liverpool defender Stephen Warnock whether the marks on Gakpo’s chest provided sufficient evidence for the decision to be assessed by VAR. Gallagher said that the referee retains all options until he restarts and can take advice from the assistants, the fourth official, or ask the VAR if he has seen the incident correctly. The VAR in Stockley Park examined the collision quickly before verifying the original decision to give Mings a booking.

John Brooks also disallowed a second-half Gakpo strike during a rare instance in which the referee was sent to the pitchside monitor to assess whether the goal was offside. Gallagher deemed this decision to be correct, saying that in law Gakpo’s goal shouldn’t have stood and that the officials had got it correct. He added that the way it is written, referees are in a pickle with it and that the VAR can’t decide, so he has to send the referee to the monitor because it has to be the referee’s decision and it has to be subjective.

The result of the game all but ended Liverpool’s hopes of Champions League qualification for next season, highlighting the potential significance of such decisions late on in the campaign. Liverpool travel to Southampton on Sunday for their final game of 2022/23, with the Europa League almost certain to be next season’s destination.

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