Premier League Drops Officials Following Controversial Decision In Manchester United’s Win Over Wolves

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Heads have rolled following a controversial decision in Manchester United’s 1-0 win over Wolverhampton Wanderers on Monday, August 14, 2023.

Three Premier League referees who were behind a decision not to award a penalty to Wolves against Manchester United have been dropped for the upcoming weekend’s matches in the Premier League.

The Wanderers weren’t handed a penalty when Manchester United goalkeeper Andre Onana bashed into Sasa Kalajdzic and didn’t make any contact with the ball.

Several reactions have ensued following the contestable decision made by Referee Simon Hooper.

To many, they believe that Andre Onana had fouled Sasa Kalajdzic and as such, Wolves should have been given a penalty.

However, some believe that Onana didn’t foul the Austrian and the decision made by Hoope, after consulting VAR, was right.

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Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL), spearheaded by Howard Webb, aren’t in support of the decision and they have subsequently sent their apology to Wolverhampton Wanderers officials after the encounter.

Center referee Simon Hooper, video assistant referee Michael Salisbury and assistant VAR Richard West, have not been selected for next weekend’s games.

Premier League referees dropped
Referee Simon Hooper has been dropped from officiating in next weekend’s matches in the Premier League

Why were Premier League referees dropped?

They were dropped from officiating in the upcoming weekend, due to their joint failure by not awarding Wolves a late penalty against Manchester United.

This is part of the initiative put in place by Howard Webb, in ensuring improvement regarding officiating in the Premier League.

Meanwhile, this is not the first time video assistant referee, Michael Salisbury, would be dropped from officiating an encounter.

In April, the Englishman wasn’t selected for VAR duties, following an error in not awarding a penalty to Brighton during their 2-1 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday, April 8, 2023.

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Premier League referees dropped
Michael Salisbury has previously been reprimanded for his errors

Different reactions have also come to the fore regarding how costly this error might be at the end of the 2023/24 season.

Some have created a scenario where Wolverhampton Wanderers might need a point to possibly stay up in the league or qualify for a European competition.

Some individuals think Gary O’Neil’s side might look back at the decision and feel aggrieved over the error of the officials in the future.

Andre Onana claims that referee Simon Hooper made the right decision

Meanwhile, summer signing Andre Onana has expressed contrary thoughts regarding the decision of Simon Hooper.

Onana indicated that the referee made the right call and he was confident that a penalty wouldn’t be awarded to Wolverhampton Wanderers.

He said: “No, goalkeepers make decisions, sometimes you are right, sometimes you are not.

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“I made a decision and I am responsible for everything. For me it was contact between two big guys and nothing happened.

Onana added that he was happy for the victory recorded by Manchester United: “But for us, the most important thing was to win and I am happy for the victory.

“Of course I was confident a penalty would not be given.”

The Premier League is a league filled with many controversial calls and given the amount of eyeballs fixated on the league, important decisions must be made to ensure it continues to be the best to many.

Referees for Manchester United’s next Premier League match

Tottenham Hotspur V Manchester United

Referee: Michael Oliver. Assistants: Stuart Burt, Dan Cook. Fourth official: John Brooks. VAR: Craig Pawson. Assistant VAR: Simon Long.

Referees for Wolverhampton Wanderers’ next match?

Wolverhampton Wanderers V Brighton and Hove Albion

Referee: Andy Madley. Assistants: James Mainwaring, Nick Hopton. Fourth official: Dean Whitestone. VAR: Peter Bankes. Assistant VAR: Steve Meredith.

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