Everton & Arsenal fans told why Son Heung-Min’s penalty was correct even though there was no contact

Everton & Oumar Niasse

Everton fans will forever have a bee in their bonnet regarding Oumar Niasse.

Just over a year ago, Oumar Niasse was hit with a two match ban for a dive against Crystal Palace.

In a 2-2 draw at Selhurst Park, Niasse was charged by the FA after he “exaggerated the effect of a normal contact” to win a penalty.

The ban came after the FA introduced a new law into football to try to combat such acts of cheating.

Son Heung-Min’s penalty vs Arsenal

During Sunday’s north London derby, Tottenham forward Son Heung-Min won a controversial penalty.

The South Korean went down in the Arsenal box following a sliding tackle from Rob Holding.

Mike Dean wasted little time pointing to the spot.

Harry Kane duly converted the penalty to put Tottenham 2-1 up in the derby.

But did Holding make contact with Son?

TV replays suggested no contact was made, which in turn triggered accusations that Son conned his way to a penalty.

Following the Everton and Niasse precedent, should Son now be expecting a two match ban?

Rob Holding vs Son Heung-Min

Keith Hackett: Tottenham’s penalty call was correct even though no contact

In the Telegraph on Monday morning, former Premier League referee Keith Hackett has argued that Tottenham’s penalty was the correct call.

Hackett also accepts that Arsenal’s Holding didn’t make contact with Son.

So how the hell does that line up? Hackett explained the following:

What makes this decision so difficult is that you could argue it is still a penalty even though no contact has been made.

Law 12 states that a direct free-kick (which is a penalty if committed inside the area) is awarded if a player makes a challenge “considered by the referee to be careless, reckless or using excessive force.”

Nowhere does it mention contact must be made to commit an offence. 

Holding’s challenge was desperate and, as a result, careless, which officials judge to be when you show “a lack of attention or consideration when making a challenge, or acting without precaution”. He made no contact because Son took evasive action rather than because he took any care to avoid his opponent.

Also see: Racist Tottenham fan caught throwing a banana skin at Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Arsenal fans will love Gary Neville’s analysis of Lucas Torreira after Tottenham.

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