DECEMBER 9, 2022

Jasbeer Singh

(Chief Editor)

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UEFA Champions League: Manchester City Fans Blast Officials After Last-minute Penalty Denied Against


Manchester City had to return with a 1-1 draw from the first leg of their UEFA Champions League 2022-23 round-of-16 clash on Wednesday. They were held by RB Leipzig.

Though in the 92nd minute of the action-packed encounter, a controversial event transpired at the Red Bull Arena. City were leading towards their final attack when an aerial delivery seemingly touched the hand of defender Benjamin Henrichs inside the penalty box. As the referee and the VAR denied a last-minute penalty to the visitors and the decision did not go down well with the away fans who vented out their frustration on social media.

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A Manchester City fan lauded the team for their “solid performance in the match,” while also referring to the handball incident. Lashing out at the officials, he tweeted, “It was frustrating that the referee, linesman, VAR and everyone except a Manchester City supporter saw the handball.”

Another fan sarcastically wrote, “It’s amazing how you can punch players, score offside goals and handball crosses and none of them will be given since they are against Manchester City.”

A disappointed supporter of the English club noted, “We got robbed of a handball, but VAR didn’t check it because it’s Manchester City.”

A fan termed the decision a “missed penalty call” and wrote, “That was a handball. Nothing less.”

A Twitter user labelled the incident “pathetic” and said that the VAR did not give it a second check which could result in a penalty for Manchester City.

The incident garnered quite similar reactions from some football pundits as well. During the post-match analysis on BT Sports, Rio Ferdinand, Shaun Wright-Phillips and Owen Hargreaves agreed that was a “handball offence.”

Former Premier League official Peter Walton was also on the same page and highlighted the “unnatural position” of Henrichs’ arm at that moment.

Furthermore, he was left stunned wondering as to why the VAR did not check it from different angles. “I have a monitor, which is connected to UEFA and notifies me when VAR is reviewing situations. I’m astonished that there was no investigation into this specific instance,” Walton said in the post-match analysis.

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Riyad Mahrez gave Manchester City an early lead, delivering a top-notch finish in the 27th minute. Since the beginning of the second half, Leipzig were looking more dangerous and invaded City’s defence several times in search of an equaliser.

Finally, in the 70th minute, Josko Gvardiol’s impressive header brought the hosts back into the contest. City will host the German side for the return leg on March 15 at the Etihad Stadium.

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