Debate About the Saka-Neuer Incident, Pundits' Opinions Are Divided - Betting News | Sports News | Casinos News | Gaming Reviews

Debate About the Saka-Neuer Incident, Pundits’ Opinions Are Divided

The incident involving Bukayo Saka at the end of the Arsenal vs Bayern Munich match sparked heated debate among English and European football pundits. The first leg of the Champions League quarter-finals between Arsenal vs Bayern Munich ended in a 2-2 draw on Tuesday (9/4/2024) local time.

The Gunners took the lead through Saka’s shot in the 12th minute. However, Serge Gnabry’s goals (18′) and Harry Kane’s penalty (32′) put Bayern ahead as the match entered the middle of the half at the Emirates Stadium. Arsenal needed Leandro Trossard’s goal in the 76th minute to equalize.

The Saka incident then occurred in the final seconds of the match. The original Arsenal academy striker penetrated into the visitors’ penalty box. He came face to face with goalkeeper Manuel Neuer who came out of his nest. Contact occurred between the two players.

Referee Glenn Nyberg from Sweden did not consider the incident a penalty and he let the match play out. The VAR check was then carried out just before the final whistle blew and there were no further checks from the referees on the field.

The incident also created heated debate with several parties believing that the contact should have been a penalty but quite a few also said that Saka himself made contact with the Munich goalkeeper. “Manuel Neuer let his foot go out. It should have been a penalty,” said former Man United defender, Rio Ferdinand.

“They [VAR] should send [the referee] to have a look. That’s a big decision in a game like this. There is so much at stake.” The same thing was also said by former Arsenal defender, Martin Kewon. “I find it quite worrying that he didn’t give that penalty,” he said.

However, another former Arsenal defender, Matthew Upson, said the opposite. “I think the decision not to give a penalty was right,” he said. “The first instinct was to give a penalty but replays showed Bukayo Saka initiated the contact. Manuel Neuer braked after he ran out and Saka almost kicked him. Correct decision from the referee under great pressure.”

The same thing was expressed by former Reading and Fulham midfielder, Steve Sidwell on Sky Sports. “I think Saka put his foot on Neuer. He is clever, I think the referee made the right decision,” he said.

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