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John Terry has publicly expressed his disappointment with Chelsea’s penalty against Arsenal despite the decision handing the Blues a deserved lead in their Premier League clash on Sunday. Cole Palmer slotted the spot-kick home to fire the hosts ahead in the London derby at Stamford Bridge.
Chelsea dominated the early proceedings as they sought a fourth successive win under Mauricio Pochettino against Mikel Arteta’s unbeaten side. And they found their reward in the 13th minute when a Mykhaylo Mudryk header rebounded off the outstretched arm of Arsenal defender William Saliba.
Referee Chris Kavanagh initially decided against handing the hosts a penalty but was called over to the VAR monitor shortly after.
Following a short review of the incident, Kavanagh pointed to the spot, and Palmer made no mistake in firing the opening goal past David Raya.
Chelsea’s £40million forward sent a soaking Stamford Bridge into a frenzy under heavy rainfall. Terry was equally as delighted but admitted his sympathy for Arsenal over what he believed was a harsh decision.
“Delighted we got the penalty, but I don’t agree with the rules on this, very harsh on defenders,” Terry wrote on X, formerly Twitter.
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“I would have been fuming if that was given against me back in the day. But happy now.”
A similar decision helped Mohamed Salah score the first of his brace in Liverpool’s 2-0 Merseyside derby victory over Everton at Anfield earlier in the day.
Michael Keane’s outstretched arm blocked a box-bound cross, which Craig Pawson penalised after a VAR review, having originally missed the offence.
Gary Neville, on co-commentary for Sky Sports, also disagreed with the VAR overturn, claiming he was taught to use his arms as leverage when challenging for a header as a player.
However, the Manchester United icon conceded that if Keane’s handball was a penalty against Arsenal, Saliba would also have to be punished.
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“It hits William Saliba’s arm. There is no doubt about that. I think he could be in a little bit of bother here,” Neville said.
“Coming off the back of the Everton game earlier, I would say this is going to be given, I would say.
“This is all about whether Saliba’s arm is there because he is trying to win the ball – it’s certainly above, out and away from his body. Is he just using that arm for leverage or to gain an advantage?
“The fact is it doesn’t matter. None of us are sure what a penalty is anymore, but that is consistent with what we saw in the Merseyside derby today.”
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