“It’s an incredible decision to send Luiz off” Journalist says sending off was unfair on Arsenal

Goal.com’s Arsenal correspondent, Charles Watts has slammed the decision to allow David Luiz’s red card to stand by VAR.

The Brazilian was sent off just before half time for a foul on Willian Jose even though it was clear that he almost made no contact with the attacker and certainly didn’t mean to foul him.

Craig Pawson had blown for a penalty immediately the striker went down and showed a red card to Luiz.

The decision went to VAR, despite the many angles that the Video Assistant Referee had, it was upheld.

Like most Arsenal fans, Watts was stunned and thinks it makes no sense that VAR cannot see how soft a decision it was.

He said it was obvious that Luiz had no intention of making the foul and the striker made the contact with the defender when he wanted to shoot.

He said on Goal.com: “It’s an incredible decision to send Luiz off.

“In real time, it’s understandable that Craig Pawson thought it was red, but VAR should have overturned it straight away.

“There is no intent from Luiz, he didn’t try to make a tackle. All it takes is one look at the replay and it’s clear that the contact – if you can call it that – came when Willian Jose pulled his foot back to shoot and clipped Luiz’s knee.

“Arsenal, who had played so well up to that point, have every right to feel very hard done by.”

Arsenal will now have to be without the defender in their next game at least, but Gabriel Magalhaes did well when he came on.

Tags Charles Watts David Luiz


  1. Pawson and var Moss both from Yorkshire. How come most refs are from the north? Can’t be anything to do with the Mike Riley, head of PGMO being Leeds based could it. Extraordinary that 30% of England’s population live in London and south east, but not a single EPL ref from this area. Last one was David Ellery who retired in 2003. Not saying that’s necessarily the problem last night, other than the fact that Riley clearly promotes his mates who are not up to the job, but I believe it’s a big contributor to why we, and for that matter other London and south east teams get more cards, less pens, etc.

  2. I fully agree, we have the best league in the world but sadly also the worse match officials in the world. This is a bitter pill to swallow especially after the Bruno Fernandes foul on Xhaka in the united game, went unpunished, in full view of the ref and the fact that Wolves were hardly in the game prior to the first penalty. Var and the officials are extremely selective when it comes to punishment for fouls committed. Certain teams can do no wrong, while others like ourselves get severely penalised.

    1. It’s sad but I have to agree with you. I have seen incidences involving arsenals opponents and VAR declines immediately. Look at our game with Leeds when the defender handled the ball and VAR refused to intervene

  3. I think the number 1 reason why fans get so irritated with MA and the players is the way we almost always seem to lose in a stupid/unlucky manner. We rarely get out played and are beaten by a better team on the day…I think most fans can accept this and get over it quickly.

    But we rarely seem to lose this way though, over the past months it’s been more like:
    -Own goals
    -Red cards
    -Brain farts
    -Puzzling subs
    -Dodgy VAR decisions

    I can easily accept a loss if we put in a good shift and are beaten by a better team on the day but our continual self-sabotage is becoming more frequent, difficult to understand in all honesty.

    Also for people blaming the officials, please learn the rules. Refs called it perfectly according to the rules. The issue is the law makers, go after them. Don’t shoot the messenger.

  4. Moss has long since proved he is no intellectual giant. After viwing it lots from every angle … he could NOT have been sure. He should thus have called the referee to look for himself. He would have been very unsure too. There would then have been a penalty and a YELLOW card (and Arsenal would have won). We were playing very well.

    1. chris, not entirely tongue in cheek, I would suggest that virtually NO ONE, who is a serious football fan and spends time, effort and angst on worrying about their team is EVER “an intellectual giant “!
      NEITHER ARE PLAYERS, MANAGERS, REFS, EVEN MANY OWNERS , though of course there are exceptions, But they ARE exceptions, IMO!
      For example, do you consider yourself an intellectual giant? Neither do I, about myself!

  5. Super proud of the boys including Luiz and Leno. Poor officiating killed us. AGAIN!!! would a man Utd or Liverpool get the same treatment? I think not. Corruption eating deep into English FA. Little wonder why they’re not invited to the world cups and bigger tournaments. I expect English Arsenal fans to revolt against this and protest massively rather than turn on a player who saved our asses against utd because of his poor history. See how biased we can get.? We should fight this corruption in football Now. Or better yet get these refs to be accountable after the games. Get them interviewed. Let the world hear the conversations that go on between the ref and VAR officials like they do in cricket and other sports. It is sick that people who call themselves Arsenal fans are actually blaming Luiz for this. Pathetic fans who just jump on bandwagon. I’m not a Luiz fan and I’ve criticised him multiple times but that definitely shouldn’t have been a red. A Bruno clip on xhaka was more of red than that, a mane elbow on Tierney was more of a red than that. You’re seriously deluded if you blame Luiz instead of poor officiating for that red card. I’ve never been more pissed at so called arsenal fans in all my life.

    1. And if we were playing badly, I wouldn’t even be pissed at all. We were playing some of the best football I’ve ever seen arsenal play. A very beautiful game that was ruined by the referee. That’s why I’m upset. If it was worth it like the Leno card, I wouldn’t fight it but only biased people think that red was justified. It sickens me that people actually think that way and the worst part is, if that had happened to a Liverpool or man Utd, you wouldn’t hear anything about it.

    2. I think some fans on here as so used to being mistreated and mislead by referees, commentators, pundits ect that their own eyes are starting to deceive them, I myself are no Luiz fan but that was a harsh red full stop.

    3. Same stupid officiating happened in the Man utd Vs Southampton match yesterday.
      Bednarek was harshly sent off.
      Very sure if it was a Maguire, it wouldn’t happen

    4. True! No farther comment! EPL officials including the VAR is a fluke! If this continues will just be about when!

  6. I agree fully with this position but Arsenal must learn to be disciplined in their play. They had seconds to half time and the ball was with the Arsenal goalkeeper who as expected took time off the clock before releasing it. The question is, how did he do it that it was quickly intercepted for a counter attack that led to the penalty? How were the defenders positioned.

    I thought I should make these points so we don’t over dwell on the fraud of the referee and ignore issues that should be addressed by the coaching crew and players. Carelessness of individuals have been costing us for too long.

  7. A video I saw of the incident showed the Wolves striker taking a swing at the ball but only hit it slightly. In doing so he lost balance and fell with Luiz behind him also falling. It didn’t look like there was any contact.
    How VAR did not pick this up warrants further investigation.. There has been too much acceptance of the ref’s decision which was disgraceful especially with VAR to back him up.
    Up till then Arsenal were vastly superior and were heading for a big win…

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