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VAR Explains why Mudryk was awarded penalty against Brighton

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Picture Credits: PremierLeague/Sky Sports YouTube

It feels like it was a long time ago since Chelsea beat Brighton 3-2 at Stamford Bridge, but yesterday the monthly VAR show published by the Premier League involved Chelsea.

The incident that occurred took place in the 2nd half with Chelsea down to 10 men following the red card by Conor Gallagher, with the scoreline being 2-1. Mudryk was clear on goal and was fouled by James Milner, the original decision was no penalty.

Following consultation with the VAR and the on field referee, an official review was recommended. The audio conversation has been published to explain why a penalty was given and why James Milner was not given a red card.

As contact initiated between Mudryk and Milner, the referees live wording was “Not for me, not for me. Side to side nothing more.”

The VAR’s first signs that a penalty was going to be reccomended was when the referee in the room deemed “the defender doesn’t play the ball.”  The VAR referee goes onto say that Milner “steps across” Mudryk and “takes the attacker out, with a trip.”

After recommending a penalty, the VAR and on field referee had to decide whether Milner should have been sent off following the foul and was sent to the screen to make the call. As we know Milner wasn’t sent off and the referee offered understanding as to why he wasn’t sent off.

The reasoning for no red card being given in the justification for a penalty included, “it’s a challenge for the ball that trips the attacker and it’s probably a DOGSO (denial of goalscoring opportunity) so I’m thinking a yellow card for James Milner.”

Chief refereeing officer, Howard Webb offered insight as to why the yellow card was issued instead of red, he told the Premier League, “In this case, the referee deemed that Milner had attempted to challenge for the ball. OK, he wasn’t in the action of actually playing the ball at that moment, but he was trying to get into that position, challenging Mudryk for the ball, and therefore, he deemed it was worthy of a yellow card, based on that law change that came in this year. And again, it was a correct judgement to show a yellow card rather than a red.”

Game changing moments such as the one above show why VAR is vital today and perhaps was the difference in Chelsea picking up 3 points instead of one or even none.

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