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“I’ve seen worse let go”- Noel Whelan thinks Antonio Conte is right to be angry with VAR after Tottenham red card

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Noel Whelan thinks Antonio Conte right to be angry with VAR after Tottenham red card vs Arsenal

Emerson Royal was shown a red card in the 62nd minute of Tottenham Hotspur’s north London derby against Arsenal on Saturday at the Emirates. The Brazil international was penalised for a late challenge on Gabriel Martinelli.

After VAR reviewed the incident, referee Anthony Taylor deemed it fit to send Emerson off. Arsenal were leading 2-1 at that but the red card killed the game for Spurs.

The Gunners scored a third via Granit Xhaka five minutes later and it was curtains for Spurs’ unbeaten start to the PL season. Speaking after the game, an evidently irritated Antonio Conte did not hide his feelings about the incident.

He said (h/t Sky Sports) that VAR in England needs to work a lot in order to improve and reach a higher level of officiating.

“Sometimes you see situations that could be a red card instead, or instead a yellow card or no yellow card. They have to work a lot about this.”

Now, former Leeds United striker Noel Whelan has told exclusively to Football Insider that there isn’t much in the challenge for Emerson to be sent off. While a case could be made for a red card, he has seen worse challenges go unpunished.

“I’ve looked at it again and again, and in slow motion. There’s no actual tackle there. There’s no power behind the challenge.”

“It’s a dangle of a leg and a clumsy one at that. I don’t think it was deserving of a red. There be other people saying it’s dangerous contact because he’s used the studs, and I get that. But I’ve seen worse let go.”

Referee Anthony Taylor sends off Tottenham Hotspur's  Emerson Royal after a foul on Arsenal's  Gabriel Martinelli.
Referee Anthony Taylor sends off Tottenham Hotspur’s Emerson Royal after a foul on Arsenal’s Gabriel Martinelli. (Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)

Emerson, as a result, is set to miss out on the next three Premier League games for Spurs. Not just his absence, but the red card’s impact on the north London derby is something that would frustrate the Spurs faithful.

The gap between us and them is now at four points and it means that we cannot afford to drop points in the future and let the gap increase – if we harbour any serious hopes of winning the title.

More Tottenham News:

In Emerson’s absence, Conte can play Ivan Perisic (as he did against Leicester City), Djed Spence, and Matt Doherty down the right-hand side.

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