Wolves player trips on air in penalty box, Arsenal’s David Luiz gets sent off

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Arsenal are having quite a nightmare against Wolves during their Tuesday Premier League match, but supporters can at least take solace in the fact that it’s not entirely because of incompetence from the players. But perhaps more concerning is where the on-pitch incompetence is actually coming from: the officials.

In the dying embers of the first half, Wolves’ Willian Jose was able to make it into the opposing penalty box, but went to ground with one David Luiz hot on his tail. Referee Kraig Paulsen flashed a red card at the Brazilian defender for allegedly clipping the last man on goal with the ball.

Replay immediately showed that there wasn’t any serious contact on Jose, but even with a second look from VAR, as has become the norm in league play, the call stood. Wolves were given the opportunity to kick from the penalty spot and Ruben Neves got his side to equalize with their opponents at one goal a piece.

Though Luiz has become the posterchild of sorts for bumbling play, it has been a long time since he’s actually put up a truly putrid performance, to his credit. The last match he was as bad as his detractors say he always is was in the Manchester City game immediately after the league returned from the coronavirus hiatus.

But as a result of this harsh decision, his numbers since becoming a Gunner look worse as a result, meaning that those who have never held a high opinion of the man will have more ammo for their criticisms moving forward. 

In the second half matters went from bad to worse for Arsenal as their goalkeeper Bernd Leno handled the ball outside his penalty area and received Arsenal’s second red card of the match. At least this one was clearly merited. Which I’m sure made Arsenal feel much better about the whole thing.

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