Referees make errors, too, and Lee Mason is in impossibly hot water after a baffling sequence of events — and two missed Brighton penalties — helped West Bromwich Albion hold onto a 1-0 win that keeps their Saturday visitors in relegation danger.
The Baggies led 1-0 when Brighton defender Lewis Dunk stroked a quick free kick home for 1-1, but referee Lee Mason blew his whistle and called it no goal. He then changed his mind and ruled it a goal before VAR reviewed the decision and took it off the board.
Throw in penalties off the woodwork from Pascal Gross and Danny Welbeck, as well as an early West Brom goal and Brighton loses a game 1-0. Insanity, even for the hard-luck Seagulls.
Dunk was fuming after the final whistle.
“It’s embarrassing: A horrendous decision,” Dunk said on NBCSN. “I said to the ref, ‘Can I take it?’ he blew his whistle and I took it. Just cause you’ve got so much pressure from the bench and players. VAR doesn’t know what he said. It’s a horrendous decision. When will he comes speak to the press like me? When will he come say his point? Never. They’ll hide behind their buffer.”
“I don’t think he knew what he was doing. He gives the goal? Why did he give the goal? Why does VAR get involve cause he said the words?”
🗣"It is embarrassing, a horrendous decision, he blew his whistle and I took it, why don't he come speak to the press, never, they hide behind their bubble"
Potter reiterated that he was told the same story as Dunk.
He’s more upset that he can’t say for sure what did happen on the pitch.
“I don’t know what the second whistle is,” said the Brighton manager. “The confusion is I don’t understand that. … The confusion is on the pitch and it gets worse when somebody from outside of this area is making the decision. It is what it is. We haven’t helped ourselves with two penalties and we couldn’t put it away.”
West Brom goalkeeper Sam Johnstone claims that Mason told Brighton the ball was kicked before he whistled. Replays showed that Dunk started his run before the whistle was blown but the ball was not struck before it sounded.
“That’s not what the ref said,” Johnstone said. “He said you’ve kicked it before I’ve whistled. I don’t think I’ve seen a free kick taken like that in 10 years. It is what it is. Surely they can’t get something like that wrong. He’s took it before he’s whistled and there’s confusion. That’s nothing to do with us. There are two penalties as well and thankfully they’ve not gone in.”
It’s a mess either way, and West Brom will be hoping it’s the equivalent of the GDS error between Aston Villa and Sheffield United last season that helped Villa stay up.
Arsenal are pushing hard to sign Moises Caicedo, with the Ecuadorian midfielder not playing for Brighton in the FA Cup against Liverpool amid a reported new $86 million bid from the Gunners. Anthony Gordon has signed for Newcastle from Everton for a fee believed to be around $60 million.
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From clicking on the links above to read the latest reports and analysis, having Sky Sports News live on Peacock all day long and to our own Pro Soccer Talk live deadline day show which starts at 5:30pm ET on Jan. 31, you won’t miss a thing.
Click on the video below to send in your questions for the PST crew for our deadline day chat where we will round up all of the deals happening late in the window, dish out grades to Premier League teams based on their business and give our analysis on the best signings of the January window.
Who’s looking like title contenders and/or favorites?
Almost at the halfway mark of the 2022-23 season, Arsenal and Manchester City are looking head and shoulders above the rest though Newcastle is not going away and Manchester United has surged into contention.
Uneven Tottenham are hanging in the top four battle, while Liverpool is struggling to stay in the Champions League scrap. Chelsea has some work to do while surprising Fulham and Brighton are hanging around on the periphery with fine campaigns.
Who are the candidates for relegation?
Everton, Bournemouth, and Southampton currently occupy the relegation places.
But Leicester, West Ham, Nottingham Forest, Wolves, and Leeds all find themselves within a few points of the bottom three after a topsy-turvy start.
Below you will find the latest Premier League table.
Would a move to Leeds be a good fit for Weston McKennie?
Stylistically the Premier League is a great fit for Weston McKennie and Leeds are probably one of the best teams he could move to.
He loves to fly into tackles and drive forward from midfield and playing just in front of Tyler Adams and Marc Roca or to the right of them would be a perfect spot for him at Leeds.
It would give Leeds more control of games and the Yorkshire club also play to his strengths. it’s a really good fit.
McKennie has struggled to have a big impact at Juve this season as injuries have taken their toll on him over the last few years. That would perhaps be the one concern about his move to the Premier League, as McKennie seems to pick up quite a few knocks.
However, looking at his stats below from this season at Juventus, the chances he creates per game and the shots per game will improve and his accurate passing will help Leeds become less susceptible on the counter.
McKennie is a player who rattles into tackles, feeds off the energy of his fans and his mentality is perfect for the aggressive side Jesse Marsch has created at Leeds.
The Texas born midfielder has always wanted to play in the Premier League and he’s got his wish at a club where he will play week in, week out and one which suits his style of play perfectly.