Finally, we can talk about a referee getting a decision correct

Ederson fouls Eddie Nketiah - Ederson not being sent off the right call – finally a referee applies the law correctly - Marc Atkins/Getty Images
Ederson fouls Eddie Nketiah - Ederson not being sent off the right call – finally a referee applies the law correctly - Marc Atkins/Getty Images

Referee Anthony Taylor had three big decisions to make on Wednesday night. He was spot on with his first two and eventually reached the right place on the third with the assistance of his video assistant referee.

The first two major calls centred on Arsenal's equaliser when Manchester City goalkeeper Ederson raced from his line to take out Eddie Nketiah inside the penalty area as the striker bore down on goal. Nketiah managed to get his shot away - which was cleared off the line - but Ederson's momentum was such that he went clattering into his opponent.

Taylor had no hesitation in pointing to the spot - despite furious and prolonged City protests but the goalkeeper, who had been booked minutes earlier, escaped a second yellow card and dismissal. Both decisions were correct.

Indeed it is refreshing to be able to support an official and talk about his correct application of law following the troubling events last weekend involving Var.

Taylor was returning from his appointment officiating the final of the Fifa Club Championship Final at the weekend and showed no sign of fatigue.

Anthony Taylor comes under pressure from the players - Ederson not being sent off the right call – finally a referee applies the law correctly - Julian Finney/Getty Images
Anthony Taylor comes under pressure from the players - Ederson not being sent off the right call – finally a referee applies the law correctly - Julian Finney/Getty Images

At the Emirates, he was in a good position to view Ederson's challenge and came to the decision it was careless rather than reckless. That is why the penalty was given and why Ederson stayed on the pitch.

The law states:

  • Careless is when a player shows a lack of attention or consideration when making a challenge or acts without precaution. No disciplinary sanction is needed.

  • Reckless is when a player acts with disregard to the danger to, or consequences for, an opponent and must be cautioned.

Taylor was again put on the spot over City's claim for a penalty when Erling Haaland was wrestled to the ground in the Arsenal box by Gabriel. That seemed a clear foul and Taylor was right to point to the spot, but the Var did his job well in spotting that Haaland was fractionally offside in the build-up. In the end a correct call.

Taylor's boss at the Professional Game Match Officials Ltd, Howard Webb, will be more than happy with his man's work.

Taylor and Michael Oliver are clearly English football's top two match officials, However, the rest of Webb's charges have some work to do to reach their standard.