(Courtesy of Wikipedia)
This weekend’s Premier League fixtures mustered up a record number of red cards – an impressive 9.
Here’s a list of the culprits:
- Jlloyd Samuel – Bolton Wanderers 0-4 Chelsea
- Geovanni – Burnley 2-0 Hull City
- Diniyar Bilyaletdinov – Everton 1-1 Aston Villa
- Carlos Cuellar – Everton 1-1 Aston Villa
- Philipp Degen – Fulham 3-1 Liverpool
- Jamie Carragher – Fulham 3-1 Liverpool
- Kenwyne Jones – Sunderland 2-2 West Ham United
- Radoslav Kovac – Sunderland 2-2 West Ham United
- Barry Ferguson – Birmingham City 0-0 Manchester City
Is it a case of the referees being told to clap down on physical contact altogether, whether it be a whack to the knee or a peck on the cheek? Or could it boil down to the English game becoming too aggressive?
Right or Wrong?
Carragher, Kovac, Cuellar and Geovanni can all feel hard done by with being sent off.
The Liverpool captain’s tug-of-war with Zamora could easily have gone either way, and both Kovac and Cuellar can feel unlucky with the referee’s decision to hand out a second booking for what looked like challenges worthy of just a foul.
And what can you say for Geovanni? The second booking was rightly awarded to the Brazilian, but the first!? Who wouldn’t be aggrieved with having a perfect goal ruled out for…well… I’m still not sure exactly why it wasn’t allowed.
However, a cynical last ditch challenge from Samuel on Drogba, as well as an eye-catching high flying two footer from Swiss Degen, were rightly punished.
A last mention for the Kenwyne Jones red card incident.
Yes it was a sending off offence – simply because the striker raised his hands. Time and again, whether you whack a player straight on the nose, or flick their ear, it’s a straight red.
As the Sunderland manager Steve Bruce pointed out, however, Ilunga’s histrionics were so appalling it was laughable. The West Ham defender needed a miniature ice pack to nurse the fatal tickle to the chest/face from the Trinidadian International.