Chelsea is back in this one with a stronger side, with £97.5 million acquisition Romelu Lukaku in the squad, and he was anticipated to help the Blues snare a three-pointer from a young Arsenal side in their first away meeting of the season.
Arsenal's Bukayo Saka was pulled down in the Chelsea penalty area by Reece James after a beautiful turn in the 40th minute, but referee Paul Tierney ruled it was not a spot-kick, adding to Arsenal's frustrations, who were already 2-0 down. Tierney's initial judgement was upheld by the Video Assistant Referee (VAR), which was unfortunate for the Gunners.
This appears to be the English referee body's first ridiculous decision of the season. Last season, a total of 125 penalties were given (29 of which were via VAR), compared to 92 in 2019/2020 and 103 in 2018/2019.
However, following the new VAR rules recently introduced to the EPL which was confirmed by Premier League referees’ chief, Mike Riley, officials were instructed to cut down on soft penalties which may have been applied on Sunday afternoon at the Emirates.
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