Ex-referee slams ignored decision as ‘Man Utd error’ should’ve been punished

Manchester United were fortunate that Harry Maguire wasn't sent off against Newcastle on Sunday, believes Premier League referee Mark Halsey.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's side stormed to victory at Old Trafford with a 3-1 win over the Magpies.

Marcus Rashford's wonder goal in the opening half was followed up by a drilled finish from Daniel James and a Bruno Fernandes penalty.

Allan Saint-Maximim got a goal back for the visitors, though Steve Bruce's side were perhaps unlucky not to receive another chance at goal when Maguire took down Jamal Lascelles inside the box.

After Jonjo Shelvey's ball into the box, Maguire could be seen backing off and elbowing Lascelles, who fell to the floor.

Despite the presence of VAR, referee Paul Tierney opted against using it and instead waved for play to continue.

And Halsey believes Maguire can count himself lucky that the incident wasn't looked at, as it would probably have led to a penalty for the visitors.

He said to This Is Futbol : “I’ve got to say when I first saw that live, I thought that’s a penalty and I was very surprised at the commentary on BT Sport never even mentioned it, they never even revisited it, so I was very surprised.

“Once again, you’ve got to look at the awareness of the referee Paul Tierney, he’s got to be looking in there.

"You’ve got to be looking at that situation because the ball, although he’s not denying a goalscoring opportunity, but, it’s a challenge off the ball and Harry Maguire knows exactly what he’s doing.

"I think Newcastle can count themselves very unlucky that they weren’t awarded a penalty in that situation.

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  • “I don’t think VAR are going to get involved in that because it’s subjective, isn’t it? I mean, is that a clear and obvious error? It’s one of those, isn’t it?

    “As you say, you don’t want VAR to get involved in every sort of incident but on that situation.

    "I think the referee Paul Tierney has got to be seeing that and I thought that’s a penalty and a caution for Harry Maguire for reckless use of the arm, I really do.”

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