The Professional Game Match Officials Board have released a statement explaining the decision not to award Harry Kane a penalty in Tottenham Hotspur's 1-0 loss to Newcastle United, insisting that there wasn't enough evidence to overturn the decision.
Spurs were pushing for an equaliser when Kane appeared to be tripped by the stumbling Jamaal Lascelles, who lost his footing and fell into Kane's legs. Refreree Mike Dean did not award a penalty, and VAR chose not to overrule the decision.
Should #THFC have had a penalty?— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) August 25, 2019
Lo Celso puts Kane through and Lascelles appears to tumble, cutting across the path of the forward!
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Many fans were left scratching their heads as to how such a verdict could be reached, and now the governing body in charge of referees has released a statement (via Paul Brown) to explain the situation.
The PGMOL said: "It was considered not to be a penalty by the on-field referee. As this was a subjective decision, the VAR deemed that there was not enough evidence to overturn the original call and so stuck with the on-field decision."
By the sounds of it, Dean must have seen the incident, but simply decided that it was not worthy of a penalty. He did not miss the collision, so it was then left up to his judgement.
VAR would only have got involved if Dean did not see the incident, when they would have been certain that it was a 'clear and obvious error' from the referee.
It is an important statement from the PGMOL, who are clearly wanting to show that the control of the game will still be left to the on-field referee, rather than those watching on the cameras. If the referee makes an informed decision, their ruling will stand.
The call from the referee meant Spurs were unable to prevent themselves from falling to a bitterly disappointing 1-0 defeat, and they currently find themselves on four points from their opening three Premier League games.