Date: 1st January 2021 at 7:00am
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Former Premier League referee Mark Halsey has reacted to the eye-opening incident involving West Ham’s Craig Dawson and Southampton’s Che Adams. 

Speaking exclusively to This Is Futbol, Halsey was quizzed on whether the West Ham defender should have received his marching orders after kicking the Saints forward in the head instead of the ball whilst in front of goal.

Southampton were forced to settle for a point in the game as well, as West Ham defended valiantly to share the points at St Mary’s on the day.

Halsey admitted that leeway has to be given to Dawson, as he made an attempt to score, and felt as though the referee made the right decision in not punishing the defender for his actions.

“The laws of the game ‘did the challenge endanger an opponent?’ intent doesn’t come into it, intent has been taken out of the game.

“I think you’ve got to give Craig Dawson a little bit of leeway in that situation because as he’s gone to kick the ball, Che Adams’ head has come up.

“I don’t think anybody expected a red card for for violent conduct or a serious foul play. So I think he’s one of those where the referee says situation where you can use your common sense show a little bit of empathy for the game.”

Adams has been a regular in the Southampton team this season, with the forward making 17 appearances in all competitions this term for Ralph Hasenhüttl’s side.

Southampton are sat ninth in the Premier League table, and are just three points adrift of fourth-placed Everton after 16 matches in this year’s campaign.

Whilst West Ham are tenth in the top-flight standings, and will be eager to put together a positive run of results as the turn of the New Year approaches.