M’Baye Niang

Getty Images

Awful Niang tackle given yellow even after review

Leave a comment

Paris Saint-Germain may have downed Stade Rennais 4-1, but it was not without controversy even despite the lopsided scoreline.

In the 34th minute, with the match tied 1-1, M’baye Niang – who had already bagged Stade Rennais’s lone goal of the match – went in studs up on 22-year-old German international Thilo Kehrer.

It was an incredibly bad tackle, as replays showed Niang’s studs caught Kehrer square on the shin after he had already released the ball to a teammate. It looks a textbook red card, but referee Karim Abed initially awarded a yellow card. VAR flagged the incident as needing review, and Abed went to the sidelines to look at the monitor.

Somehow, he refused to change his initial decision. See for yourself:

As the game progressed and halftime arrived, PSG manager Thomas Tuchel was still understandably seething about the decision. As the halftime whistle blew, cameras caught the German boss yelled angrily at the referees – in English – to “go home and get that s*** away,” referring to the VAR equipment.

But Tuchel wasn’t done. He marched down the tunnel with purpose and continued to berate the referees…but switched languages. He transitioned flawlessly into angry French, asking the referees “Why do we even have VAR? Why do we even have it? Why? If there is a foul, it’s not a foul! If there is a red card, it’s not a red card!”

Niang apologized for the tackle after the match on social media. “A tackle poorly controlled! I had no intention to hurt you, I’m happy I did not hurt you! @KehrerThilo good luck the rest of the season and I’m so sorry!”

Thankfully for Tuchel, Kehrer was able to continue and PSG eventually won on a brilliant performance from Kylian Mbappe who picked up a goal and an assist in the second half, with Edinson Cavani scoring twice and Angel Di Maria bagging two assists.

VAR in the spotlight again, this time for not working

Getty Images
Leave a comment

PARIS (AP) – The video assistant referee system has been much talked about since being used at the World Cup earlier this year – praised by some for spotting fouls, criticized by others for slowing down matches.

On Sunday, VAR attracted attention for another reason altogether: it stopped working during the 1-1 draw between Rennes and Toulouse.

“The fourth official came to see me 10 minutes from the end of halftime to tell me it wasn’t working,” Toulouse coach Alain Casanova said. “There was a problem, quite simply.”

Casanova said he and his Rennes counterpart, Sabri Lamouchi, as well as the two team captains, were all informed before the second half started.

Toulouse may have cause for regret because VAR was not used to review images when a penalty was given to Rennes midway through the second period. It was awarded after striker M’Baye Niang fell under a challenge from Jean-Clair Todibo, who was shown a yellow card for protesting the decision.

Niang converted in the 70 minute, but Todibo headed in the equalizer two minutes from time for Toulouse.

Toulouse played with 10 men for the second half after forward Aaron Leya Iseka was sent off in the 43rd for a second yellow card.

The draw leaves Rennes struggling in 16th place – two places above the relegation zone – while Toulouse is seventh.


Montpellier continued its fine start by beating local rival Nimes 3-0 to move into second place – although Marseille can take second by winning at Lille later Sunday.

Defender Ambroise Oyongo put Montpellier ahead and striker Andy Delort made it 2-0 after nine minutes of first-half injury time. A metal gate gave way after Montpellier fans celebrated Oyongo’s goal, sending a few of them spilling onto the pitch and causing the match to be delayed.

Reports said two fans sustained light injuries.

The outstanding Florent Mollet set up striker Gaetan Laborde for a diving header in the 79th, after which a crowd disturbance caused the match to be stopped for about 30 minutes.

Some 70-80 riot police came onto the pitch to block a section of agitated Montpellier fans from confronting their Nimes counterparts.

Watford 2-0 West Brom: 10-man Hornets build lead, hold on

Leave a comment
  • Hornets nab 2nd straight win
  • Sides split season series
  • Britos sees red

M’Baye Niang scored off a Troy Deeney feed before the two flipped the script for a second as Watford took a 2-0 lead before navigating a red card in a win over West Bromwich Albion at Vicarage Road on Tuesday.

Watford moves into 10th with 37 points, while West Brom stays eighth with 44.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

A long ball came to captain Troy Deeney, and a flick to Niang found the ball in the back of the goal.

James McClean could’ve doomed West Brom’s chances when he clattered into Jose Holebas and then engaged in some extracurriculars, but only a yellow was shown. Tony Pulis took the midfielder off at halftime.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]

Watford made it 2-0 when Niang returned the favor to Deeney with a curling cross over the Baggies’ back line. Deeney’s first touch almost misled him, but he made amends with a classy low touch to beat Ben Foster.

Nacer Chadli tore a shot off the outside of the net as the Baggies tried to find a way back into the match.

Things got more interesting when Britos chopped down Salomon Rondon to pick up a red card, and the Hornets would face 20 minutes up two goals but down a man. That wasn’t much of a problem, as Watford could’ve added a third despite the disadvantage.

Premier League AT HALF: Man Utd, West Brom trail (video)

Leave a comment

Premier League midweek!

[ STREAM: Every PL game live here ]

Manchester United 0-1 Everton [STREAM]

David De Gea had a disappointing series of plays that began with allowing a Kevin Mirallas-prodded corner and ended with him tentative while Phil Jagielka made a cute finish.

The Everton defender was being held by Chris Smalling and stuck his leg out to push the ball past De Gea.

Watford 1-0 West Bromwich Albion [STREAM]

M’Baye Niang picked up a Troy Deeney flick, dribbled toward the edge of the 18 and smashed a shot side panel to give the hosts a surprising early lead.

Leicester City 0-0 Sunderland [STREAM]

Lee Cattermole has returned from a long lay-off and — wouldn’t you know it — has a yellow card to his credit.

Burnley 0-0 Stoke City [STREAM]

Tom Heaton has kept the hosts in it, which is a sentence that can be applied to many of Burnley’s recent matches.

Watford 2-1 Burnley: Niang stars against 10-man Clarets

Leave a comment
  • Hendrick gets early red
  • Niang stars
  • Hornets leapfrog visitors

M’Baye Niang had a goal and an assist as Watford won again, this time a 2-1 win over 10-man Burnley at Vicarage Road on Saturday.

Troy Deeney also scored after Burnley’s Jeff Hendrick saw red very early in the match. Ashley Barnes converted a late penalty for the visitors.

The win puts Watford 10th with 30 points, a point ahead of 12th place Burnley.

[ MORE: Watch full PL match replays ]

It took less than 10 minutes for Hendrick to change the match, flying two-footed into Jose Holebas for a straight red card.

It was 1-0 to the Hornets soon after, with Deeney continuing his step up in form by barreling a header home.

The advantage doubled before the break thanks to new Hornet attacker M’Baye Niang. The AC Milan product can be proud of his opener, and he also assisted Deeney’s tally.

Sebastian Prodl handled a ball near the goal line to give Burnley a penalty kick with under 15 minutes to play. Barnes finished the chance, and the Clarets had a bit of hope.

[ MORE: Latest Premier League standings ]

[ MORE: Full lineups, stats, box score ]