Ex-ref: Official fully justified in giving Liverpool a penalty, wrong on West Ham equaliser

Anthony Taylor was the man in the middle of a controversial game at Upton Park yesterday.

Ex-referee Dermot Gallagher has said that Anthony Taylor got one big decision wrong, but one right during Liverpool’s 2-1 win over West Ham United at Upton Park yesterday in a game which contained some controversial incidents.

Gallagher said Taylor was justified to allow Liverpool a second penalty after Adrian brought down Jon Flanagan – which allowed Steven Gerrard to score from the spot to make it nine league wins on the bounce for Liverpool.

Adrian appeared to have touched the ball, leaving West Ham’s players, and their manager Sam Allardyce, furious.

Gallagher told Sky Sports News: “I think it’s a tough call and I think the referee can fully justify giving a penalty. The goalkeeper has got the slightest nick on the ball but without a doubt he’s gone for the player and taken him down.

“One of the problems we have is this thing about he’s touched the ball. He does touch the ball but he makes sure he takes the player down because once that ball goes past the goalkeeper, if he doesn’t take him down the player will either cross the ball or push it towards the net.”

The former official said the decision to award West Ham United an equalising goal after Simon Mignolet dropped the ball in Guy Demel's path, allowing him to tap home was incorrect. But he praised assistant referee Stuart Burt for being strong enough to flag up the incident – as Andy Carroll looked to have hit Mignolet on the head and arm, leading to the Liverpool goalkeeper dropping the ball in Demel’s path.

Gallagher added: “I thought it was a foul straight away. Carroll can’t get the ball, he’s moved his arm towards it and caught Mignolet on the head. He’s not only caught him on the head he’s caught him on the arm which has forced him to lose the ball. It’s definitely a foul. It’s a foul the referee hasn’t seen, there’s no doubt about that because if you watch the referee, he just turns and goes back to the middle.

“If you look across the pitch at Stuart Burt, he’s got a great view in. He’s stood up, been really brave. He’s strong, he’s signalled that, he’s called the referee over and spoken about it, and they’ve spoken at quite a length.

“The longer it went on I actually said it won’t be a goal – him telling it it’s not a goal will convince him so when he gave the goal I was really, really surprised.

“All I can think he hasn’t give him enough information to convince him to change his original mind.”

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