November 29, 2020

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Rio Ferdinand slams decision to overturn West Brom penalty in Man Utd win

3 min read

Fernandes pleaded with the referee to reverse his decision (Picture: Getty Images)

Rio Ferdinand has slammed referee David Coote for overturning his decision to award West Brom a penalty in Manchester United’s 1-0 victory over the Baggies on Saturday.

United recorded their first Premier League win at Old Trafford this season in controversial fashion, needing a retaken second-half penalty from Bruno Fernandes to stumble across the line.

With the game tied at 0-0 in the second period, West Brom were awarded a penalty for Fernandes’ challenge on Conor Gallagher in the box.

David Coote reversed his original call (Picture: Getty Images)

But upon advice from VAR to check his pitch-side monitor, referee Coote changed his mind and decided that Fernandes got a slight touch on the ball.

United then went up the other end minutes later and earned a penalty for themselves after Semi Ajayi’s handball.

Fernandes’ spot-kick was saved by Sam Johnstone, but it was forced to be retaken with the Baggies goalkeeper clearly off his line.

And Portugal international Fernandes scored his second effort, handing Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side all three points at Old Trafford.

Fernandes’ penalty was the difference for United (Picture: Getty Images)

But speaking on BT Sport after the game, United legend Ferdinand was fuming at referee Coote for reversing his original decision.

‘It’s a disgraceful decision, he got it right first time’, the former England defender said.

‘He’s gone there looking at it [the screen]. How do you actually go against the decision that you made initially when you’re looking at it again in slow-mo?

‘The more you look at it the more it’s a pen.’

Ferdinand’s former United team-mate Paul Scholes, however, thought the decision wasn’t clear-cut.

‘I’ve seen it 50 times I still can’t make my mind up,’ Scholes added. ‘I know it does look like a little bit on shin-on-shin.

‘It does look like he [Fernandes] touches the ball a little bit. From another angle you can see Bruno’s reaction to go straight away to the referee to complain. I don’t think it’s totally conclusive.’

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