Former top-flight official Mark Halsey gives his verdict on whether Romain Saiss should have been sent off for his goal-line clearance in Wolves 1-1 draw with Newcastle.
The Magpies were held to a draw on home territory after Ruben Neves bagged his first-ever-headed goal in senior football.
Steve Bruce’s men could have secured all three points, though, when Jacob Murphy teed up Joelinton following a mazy run, but the Brazilian striker’s shot was blocked on the line by Wolves’ centre-back Saiss.
The ball appeared to strike the 30-year-old’s arm before ballooning over the bar. However, it was deemed to be in a natural position, and therefore, the play was allowed to continue.
Halsey had this to say on the incident. (15:28)
He said: “If it was a deliberate error, then I think VAR would have got involved. I mean, I had to look it a few times and I couldn’t tell, so if you can’t see after that first or second replay then you don’t get involved. And when I watched it again, I wasn’t sure if it was in that in that red zone, where it’s an offence, or the green zone, where it’s not handball.
“I think it was a tough tough call and I think the right wasn’t a penalty.”
In our view, the right decision was made on this occasion. Law 12 states that it is a handball offence if the hand/arm has made the player’s body unnaturally bigger or the hand/arm is above/beyond the player’s shoulder level.
As neither of these two situations occurred, Saiss blocked Joelinton’s shot within the laws of the game and deserves credit for some good defending.