Celtic rightfully had a penalty awarded against them on Saturday for handball by Alexandro Bernabei in their victory against Dundee United.
This is according to former Premier League referee Dermot Gallagher, who has been speaking on the latest edition of Sky Sports’ Ref Watch.
Ange Postecoglou’s men saw their lead at the top of the Scottish Premiership table extended following their 4-2 victory at Paradise, which was topped off by Rangers’ loss on Sunday.
However, the game was not short of controversy, with Bernabei seeing a penalty given against him by VAR for a handball despite having his back turned away from the ball.
Although it did not appear as if any of the Dundee United players initially appealed for the handball, Gallagher remained adamant that the referee and VAR came to the right conclusion.
He said: “The player will say he’s got his back to the ball, but we saw Dan Burn [for Newcastle v Brentford] the other week – if your arm’s up that high, which it is, it strikes you, blocks the ball coming back across goal, the referees are consistent on this – they give handball.”
TIF Thoughts on Gallagher’s comments…
It did feel like a really harsh decision against the Bhoys considering the defender was not looking in the direction of the ball when it hit his arm.
Should this have been awarded as a penalty?
However, it feels as if this is going to be a decision Scottish football fans are going to have to get used to now VAR is in place, with Gallagher referring to a similar call in the Premier League just the other week.
One thing about this decision is as long as it is given consistently throughout the season, it will certainly become a lot easier to digest – but that is yet to be seen.