Referee Andy Madley may have made a key mistake in handing James Tomkins a second yellow as Crystal Palace fell to a heavy defeat on Monday.
Things really couldn’t have gone much worse for the Eagles as Premier League football returned to Selhurst Park after the break for the winter World Cup.
Indeed, Bobby Decordova-Reid, Tim Ream and Aleksandar Mitrovic all scored as London rivals Fulham claimed an easy 3-0 win, while Tomkins and Tyrick Mitchell were both sent off before the hour mark.
However, fans may have the right to feel a little bit aggrieved by the call to punish the Crystal Palace centre-back for his supposed elbow on Mitrovic, as footage suggests that it might have been a little harsh.
Do you think it should have been a second yellow?
TIF Thoughts on Crystal Palace…
Upon watching replays of the incident, while Tomkins does slightly raise his elbow, he doesn’t exactly swing it with much force, while Mitrovic seems to initiate the contact by running into him.
And while left-back Mitchell had already been sent off, the score was still only 1-0 at that stage and so a comeback wouldn’t have been entirely out of the question.
However, with referee Madley pulling out a second yellow for Tomkins, Patrick Vieira’s men were down to nine men and that effectively ended the game as a contest.
All in all, it was a day to forget for the Eagles, who will now see two first-team players suspended for their next fixture against Bournemouth on 31st December.