Brendan Rodgers unhappy with VAR officials after Marcel Sabitzer tackle at Old Trafford

Manchester United midfielder Marcel Sabitzer was caught up in a bit of controversy on Sunday. Many argued he should have been sent off after catching Leicester City defender Wout Faes with a late challenge.

To call it a challenge, however, would be a stretch of the imagination. It looks a lot worse in slow motion, but don’t we all agree that most tackles appear worse when broadcasters play with the speed of the tackle itself.

Maybe Sabitzer did get lucky – but it was a mere kick on the knee, and you can tell from the footage below that he tried to pull out after realising the ball had been played away from defence.

Speaking after the match, Brendan Rodgers gave his verdict on the incident (via Goal): “It’s a sending-off – straight leg onto the knee. How it wasn’t looked at and deemed that, it was incredible really when I see it,” Rodgers said. “I don’t know [why it wasn’t reviewed]. Someone has said it was maybe after an incident but I don’t really buy that one. If you look at Arsenal’s penalty against Manchester City, Eddie Nketiah is in on goal, he has a shot but the follow through makes it a penalty, which makes it a foul. In this instance, even if the play has stopped, he’s followed through and straight-legged him right on his knee.”

Rodgers added: “I’ll take away that we should have been playing against 10 men. It was a challenge that, how that’s not picked up, as a straight-leg stud to the knee on Wout. How that is not a sending off I will never know.”

Graeme Souness was adamant that Sabitzer should have been sent off. The sheer irony whenever he complains about tackles and decisions after spending his entire career collecting shins.

Dirty Souness in action

Speaking on Sky Sports at half-time, Souness said: “I think this is a red card for several reasons. He’s on his heels when the ball breaks to him. He’s turned side onto it. If you’re going to do someone that’s how you do it. If he makes contract with the ball what’s he going to do with the ball? He’s looking for the player.

“I don’t care what some referee who has never played the game has to say on that. That is a sending off. That is dangerous play. If that’s not dangerous play, what is? He’s turned side on, that’s a classic case of setting yourself up to do someone.”

Of course, Souness talks from a wealth of experience experience and knows a thing or two about going onto the pitch to seriously injure opponents.

The fact Sabitzer wasn’t sent off makes up for Casemiro’s bizarre 3-game ban, right?

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