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1st September 2014

A speight of early goals but also more questionable refereeing decisions!!

The chances of the bookies having to pay out on many 6-3 predictions at Goodison were unlikely but what a game; goals, spats and as usual amidst it all debateable decisions. With so many goals MOTD chose to gloss over major talking points.

Conceding six goals at home is bad enough but how much worse might it have been if the hosts had played with only ten men and had their goalkeeper sent off?

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The assistant referee appeared to have a torrid evening. Ivanovich probably offside for Chelsea's second goal, Howard definitely handling the ball outside his penalty area and Costa denied a goal when he looked onside. Perhaps if the game had been goalless then these incidents would have come under much greater scrutiny.

In the shock of the day Manchester City lost at home to Stoke City and there should have been a penalty awarded for each side. The ref waved play on though probably because on each occasion the player impeded made a theatrical fall to the ground. Not enough to be classed obviously as blatant simulation but enough to suggest to the official that the players were making a meal of it.

No doubt that the match officials got it wrong but players just don't make it easy for themselves.

Another mistake at West Ham as referee Mike Dean awarded a corner to Southampton instead of a goal kick to the hosts. The ref, despite Big Sam's comments, could not be blamed for the Hammers defence switching off and not defending the corner though!

Manchester United's poor start to the season continued at Burnley where referee Chris Foy was his usual non committal self. He was probably correct in turning down the game's first two penalty appeals but I'm not too sure that he was right in turning down a late United shout for a spot kick for handball.

The Burnley defender didn't deliberately go to handle the goalbound shot but his arms were held in an unnatural position and posed a barrier to the ball's progress, so as the commentators say, Iíve seen them given.

Same ref at West Ham v Spurs recently and albeit helped by his assistant he gave that one and issued a red card!

Spurs v Liverpool on Sunday went smoothly and was well refereed by Phil Dowd. He was very well placed to correctly award Liverpool a penalty.

Have a good week.

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