Everton have made a ‘formal complaint’ to the Premier League over the standard of refereeing after they were controversially denied a penalty against Manchester City on Saturday.
With around five minutes of normal time remaining at Goodison Park, and Everton trailing 1-0, VAR official Chris Kavanagh examined a possible handball by Rodri in the penalty area, with on-field referee Paul Tierney also failing to blow for a foul.
BBC Sport pundit Alan Shearer was among those in the media to express his bewilderment at the decision, calling it ‘ridiculous’ on Match of the Day.
The Athletic’s Patrick Boyland tweeted on Monday morning: “Understand Everton made a formal complaint to the Premier League this morning over the officiating in recent matches. Not just about Rodri handball, but other decisions too”.
The journalist also shared a link to a corresponding article for The Athletic in which he revealed that Everton CEO Denise Barrett-Baxendale harbours ‘grave concerns’ over the standard of officiating in recent Toffees matched and has demanded that an apology be made to Frank Lampard and his players following Saturday’s controversy.
Lampard said after the match that he expected an apology, or a statement admitting the error, but stressed that ‘it will mean nothing’.
Indeed, it could prove to be a particularly consequential moment in Everton’s season given that they find themselves just a point above the relegation zone with 14 matches left to play.
That’s two disputed penalty calls which have gone against The Toffees in as many weeks, with Oriol Romeu escaping punishment for what Noel Whelan called a ‘stonewall’ handball in the 2-0 defeat at Southampton.
Therefore, it’s little wonder that the club’s management and hierarchy feel so hard done by, as such refereeing oversights simply aren’t good enough.
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