June 3, 2023

Chelsea striker Timo Werner saw his goal against Wolves disallowed for a foul on Romain Saiss, with the Blues eventually being pegged back to a draw in the game

Former Premier League referee Dermot Gallagher has disagreed with Peter Bankes’ decision to rule out Timo Werner ’s goal for Chelsea against Wolves on Saturday. The German striker had put the ball in the back of the net, but the officials decided to disallow it for a foul on defender Romain Saiss.

It was a key decision in the game, happening just before Romelu Lukaku scored a brace at Stamford Bridge. While the home side had a two-goal lead, the visitors struck back through Francisco Trincao and a 97th minute equaliser from Conor Coady.

It means that Thomas Tuchel‘s men have only registered one win in their last five league games, Discussing the reason for the collapse, the coach said in his press conference: “We invited the counter-attacks and big chances. Once you do this, you lose confidence and invite the opponent to smell that something is possible when it is unnecessary.”

With Champions League qualification still in the balance and an FA Cup final this weekend, the Blues could have used all the momentum possible going into the final few weeks. So the draw, from a more comfortable lead, will be frustrating.

Even more so is the circumstances in which the dropped points came, following Werner’s disallowed goal. The forward managed to get behind the defenders in the box to slot home, though defender Saiss went to ground under slight contact.

The referee gave a free kick for a foul and the VAR didn’t overturn that decision. This is something that former referee Dermot Gallagher disagreed with, saying on Sky Sports: “Wrong decision. On another day, it would not be given as a foul. When you look at an incident like this, you can pick the bones out of it, there is no doubt about that.

“When you watch how the referee [Peter Bankes] refereed all day, this was actually in keeping with his tolerance level. What I would say is I watched this game from minute naught to minute 90 and whenever anything like that occurred, he gave a foul, so it was not a massive surprise to me he gave a foul there.”

It’s a decision that would have likely seen the side take all three points, but they had to settle for one. They’ll have to put that behind them soon though, with an FA Cup final on the horizon left as an option to end the season on a high note.

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