Former Premier League referee Dermot Gallagher has given his verdict on a controversial incident in the game between Wolves and Arsenal on Saturday.
Wanderers fell to a 2-0 defeat at Molineux, and will now spend the next few weeks rooted to the foot of the Premier League table.
Martin Odegaard scored twice in the second-half for the Gunners, with Arsenal running out 2-0 winners.
But the game could have panned up very different had a decision gone Wolves’ way early in the game.
Boubacar Traore slid a ball through to Goncalo Guedes, who got to it first before being fouled by Arsenal defender Willian Saliba.
It looked like a penalty in real time, and replays showed Saliba kicked the back of the Wolves star’s leg.
But as the incident happened the linesman flagged for offside, meaning the potential penalty incident became irrelevant.
Gallagher was reviewing incidents from the weekend for Sky Sports today, and on the Guedes one he said: “It could have been a penalty.
“I think the problem here is the incorrect offside flag. It clouds everybody’s judgement in so much as, that’s where they come together – I think it’s a foul, if the game goes on I think a penalty is given – but because the referee sees the flag up at that point, he whistles for offside.
“So the referee doesn’t make a decision on the penalty. So, the VAR can’t say the referee has made a clear and obvious error. He’s given offside, so it defaults back, unfortunately, to the offside decision that was incorrect.”
Wolves undone by an awful decision at Molineux
It was truly a terrible decision at Molineux.
Replays showed that the linesman was actually behind Traore and Guedes when the ball was played by the former.
It is very strange that he decided to flag, given they are encouraged to let things play out. Especially given how tight this one was. Perhaps because of his poor positioning, he felt Guedes was way offside.
The frustrating thing is that due to that offside call, no decision could then be taken on the challenge by Saliba on Guedes.
It is just silly how the rules mean it couldn’t have been looked at due to an offside call which was incorrect.
Had Wolves gotten a penalty and scored, and Arsenal seen Saliba sent off, it could have been a totally different game.