Martin Keown is adamant that Vladimir Coufal deserved to concede a penalty on Wednesday (15 December) as West Ham lost 2-0 to Arsenal.
The Czech Republic defender, 29, was penalised for upending Gabriel Martinelli in the penalty box during the second half at the Emirates Stadium and was subsequently shown a yellow card, followed by a red, after receiving a booking in the first half.
BBC Match of the Day pundit Keown, speaking via talkSPORT [as shared on their Twitter account] on Friday (17 December), engaged in a debate with a West Ham supporter who disagreed with the referee’s decision.
Keown said: “I’ve got to take you to task Ray, are you saying that the Coufal challenge was clean? I think you’re wrong. David Moyes came out afterwards and said it was a foul.
“It’s a yellow card. It was high, it was over the ball.”
Ray replied: “It’s getting ridiculous, the game’s getting out of hand.”
Keown: “Even when I was playing, if I made that challenge, I’m getting a yellow card.
“It was very interesting when David Moyes turned around and said – I was getting pelters from the West Ham fans – it’s a foul, Coufal was stupid there. Why don’t we listen to the managers occasionally?”
There have been two sides to this debate, with some suggesting it was a farcical decision and others agreeing that the referee made the right call on Wednesday.
Keown, a tough-tackling centre-back during his days at Arsenal, among others, is in the latter camp, alongside Moyes.
The argument could rage on for days now with West Ham’s game with Norwich City on Saturday called off due to a Covid-19 outbreak.
Therefore, the reaction from the Arsenal defeat is going to remain in the news.
But one thing is for sure – Coufal is suspended for West Ham’s next match.
Who that will be against remains to be seen, however, with football thrown into chaos amid the ongoing situation with positive Covid cases in England.
Saturday’s postponement could allow a number of injured West Ham defenders to recover, though, with Aaron Cresswell and Ben Johnson both missing recent games.
In other West Ham news, Neil Warnock launched into an on-air rant over a recent Irons player controversy.
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