The move that could have decided the great showdown between Chelsea and Liverpool, Sunday’s star game in the Premier League, occurred less than 30 seconds into the competition.
Liverpool’s Sadio Mane rose to challenge against Chelsea’s Cesar Azpilicueta, but led with his forearm and elbow, making contact with the Chelsea captain’s head, who collapsed to the deck.
Referee Anthony Taylor faced a big early decision: No referee wants to have to send off a player in less than a minute in a match, and he opted for the most drastic. Taylor showed Mane a yellow card for reckless play instead of a red card for Serious foul play for endangering safety. of an opponent.
“It’s a light red,” Azpilicueta said after the game. “I don’t care if five seconds of play have elapsed. It’s the first action and it’s light red. [Mane] does not want to challenge. He does not see the ball. He just wants to hit with his elbow. I do not understand.
“What’s disappointing is that this decision was clear and I saw the replay, but I didn’t need it because in [real] Life that I knew was light red.
“Of course, we are making these decisions against us and it could change the way we [course] of the game.”
What Thomas Tuchel said about Mane’s elbow
Mane stayed behind and scored the opening goal of the game eight minutes later, taking advantage of a mistake by Trevoh Chalobah to put Liverpool ahead. That only served to sharpen the outrage expressed by Chelsea after the game.
“I’m not a friend of early red cards and I hate saying it because I love Mane and he should always be on the court because he’s a good guy and he’s a great player. But it’s a red card. Sorry, it’s a red card.” Chelsea manager Thomas Tuchel said after the game.
“The elbow is in the face and it doesn’t matter if you do it after 20 seconds or after 20 minutes, it’s a red card,” he continued. “It’s difficult to take in a game like this. It’s difficult to take in.”
“I love Mane, he’s a nice guy and a great player, but he’s a red card.”
Thomas Tuchel has joined captain César Azpilicueta to highlight a series of referee decisions that he believes go against Chelsea … ???? pic.twitter.com/zYczc72X2d
– Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) January 2, 2022
Tuchel also pointed out how it was the same referee who officiated the first game of the season between the two contenders at Anfield Road. Taylor sent Reece James out of Chelsea in that match for what he saw as the denial of an obvious scoring opportunity for a hand foul at the goal line.
“If you remember the first game in Liverpool, how fast the referee himself was in giving us a red card, how fast he was with that decision. And I said it kills a game,” Tuchel commented. “Would it kill a game if a player gets a red card after 20 seconds? Yes. But it’s a red card. Sorry, it’s a red card.”
It’s a calling foul that left Chelsea bitter late in the match, particularly as the video assistant referee (VAR) failed to alert Taylor to look at him a second time on the monitor due to a clear and obvious mistake.
Inconsistent use of the VAR has frustrated Chelsea, who felt they should have had a penalty in their previous match, a 1-1 draw against Brighton, if the VAR had ordered the referee to look at a handball again and a trip off Christian. Pulisic in the Brighton penalty area.
“If you put your elbow in someone else’s face, it’s a red card and nothing else,” Tuchel continued. “And if you don’t check it [by VAR] We ended up in the same discussion as in the last game where we didn’t check the handballs in the opponent’s box, where we didn’t check penalties for ourselves. To put it politely, it’s very unfortunate. “