Howard Webb admits wrong decision made in Liverpool game

Howard Webb was speaking with Michael Owen about the incident.

Image Credit: Premier League

Liverpool had some massive games in the Premier League during December with a top-of-the-league clash against Arsenal at Anfield taking the limelight.

Arsenal took the lead in that game through an early header from defender William Saliba however Liverpool responded before half-time with a fantastic goal from Mo Salah.

The two sides couldn’t get the better of each other in the second-half as Trent Alexander-Arnold came closest with a shot that cannoned off the crossbar.

However, there was a big controversy which hung over the game at full-time as a penalty was not given to Liverpool after Martin Odegaard had appeared to clearly handball it in his own box.

Now the audio has been released from the VAR showing how they came to the decision that it was not indeed a spot-kick.

Howard Webb thinks Liverpool should have been awarded a penalty

The chief refereeing officer for PGMOL Howard Webb has discussed this incident on the show he does with former Liverpool striker Michael Owen.

Owen stated that he thought it was a penalty and Webb agreed with him stating that it was mistake.

Webb said: “So do I. The referee on the field recognized that Odegaard had slipped and saw his arm go towards the ground. 

“We talk about ‘supporting arms’. If somebody falls, breaks their fall with the arm, it’s all very natural and a pretty well-established concept. In this situation. though, there’s an important difference to a normal play that’s falling.

“This is not just Odegaard accidentally falling on to the ball. He does slip, his arm does go out, but he actually pulls his arm back in towards his body, which is when the ball makes contact with the arm.”

“The VAR looked at that aspect. He felt it was a case of Odegaard trying to make himself actually smaller by bringing the arm back towards the body. That is the element that’s important here.

“Whether it’s instinctive or deliberate, he gets a huge advantage by bringing the arm back towards the ball. All the feedback we got afterwards was very clear. The game expects a penalty in this situation. I would agree.”

Liverpool could have spent Christmas top of the table if they had won that game and the decision to not award the penalty has proved to be another vital decision the referees have got wrong.

The Reds had to deal with a perfectly good goal being chalked off in the earlier stages of the campaign against Tottenham Hotspur due to errors of communication from the referees in the VAR hub.

Despite this though at the moment Liverpool are top of the Premier League and have only lost one game throughout the league campaign which was due to that wrong offside against Luis Diaz.

They have also since got their revenge on Arsenal as they knocked them out of the FA Cup at their own ground but there is of course still concern about the inconsistency from referees.

It is a talking point almost every week and clubs will be hoping that standards improve as the season goes on.

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