‘It was never a penalty… never’: Jose Mourinho and Arsene Wenger agree that England should NOT have been awarded the -kick which led to their semi-final winner against Denmark, as duo insist ‘VAR let the referee down’ at Wembley
- England beat Denmark 2-1 at Wembley to book their spot in the Euro 2020 final
- The Three Lions were given a penalty in extra-time for a foul on Raheem Sterling
- Many have claimed Sterling dived to win the spot-kick which led to the winner
- Harry Kane saw his penalty saved before he cooly scored the rebound late on
- Mourinho and Wenger both agree that VAR should’ve overturned the decision
- Find out the latest Euro 2020 news including fixtures, live action and results here
They haven’t always seen eye-to-eye but, for once, Jose Mourinho and Arsene Wenger have agreed that England should not have been awarded the penalty which led to their winning goal against Denmark on Wednesday.
With the tense semi-final sent to extra-time after Simon Kjaer’s own goal cancelled out Mikkel Damsgaard’s superb opener, England were controversially awarded a spot-kick by referee Danny Makkelie after Raheem Sterling went down in the box.
Replays showed that little contact was made during the challenge on Sterling, which saw the England superstar accused of ‘diving’ as a result by rivals fans.
England were awarded a contentious penalty in extra-time after Raheem Sterling went down
Jose Mourinho (left) and Arsene Wenger (right) agreed VAR should’ve overturned the penalty
Harry Kane stepped up to take the high-pressure penalty, which was saved by Denmark goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel, before the England captain slotted home the rebound to send his country into the Euro 2020 final.
Makkelie’s call in the 102nd minute of the game has since dominated headlines, with many left baffled why VAR didn’t intervene and at least ask the match official to take a second look.
Legendary Arsenal boss Wenger was one of those in the ‘no penalty’ camp and believes the Dutch referee was let down by his video assistants.
‘No penalty,’ Wenger said on beIN SPORTS. ‘I don’t understand why they don’t ask the referee to have a look at it.
Wenger believes referee Danny Makkelie (left) was let down by VAR over the decision
‘In a moment like that, it’s important that the referee is absolutely convinced that it was a penalty. It was not clear enough to say: ‘yes it is,’ and at least he should have had a look on the screen.
‘I don’t know why the VAR didn’t ask him to go. For me, it was no penalty, no. I think that VAR has let the referee down, not Denmark. Denmark is a bit unfortunate.
‘I understand that it’s difficult for the referee, but he must have a look at it.’
Mourinho was in full agreement with his long-time rival, insisting that it was ‘never a penalty’ and that he was ‘disappointed’ that the decision was given.
‘England deserved to win and I am very happy, don’t get me wrong,’ Mourinho wrote in The Sun.
Harry Kane saw his penalty saved but tucked away the rebound to send England to the final
Kane celebrates with Phil Foden after slotting home England’s winner from the rebound
‘But I say it the way I see it and, as a football man, I am disappointed that the penalty on Raheem Sterling was given.
‘Maybe the England fans won’t like my opinion but it’s never a penalty… never. I don’t understand the referee’s decision.
‘And I understand even less the fact that VAR didn’t bring the ref over to the screen or overturn the decision. It was never a penalty against the first defender, and it was never a penalty on the second defender.’
Denmark legend and father of Kasper, Peter Schmeichel, also claimed it was not a penalty.
He said: ‘He made a really big mistake on the penalty and this will be debated for a long, long time. It’s a hard one to take because it’s not a penalty.’
Peter Schmeichel claimed the referee’s ‘big mistake’ cost Denmark a place in Euro 2020 final
Denmark boss Kasper Hjulmand admitted he felt bitter after England ended his battling side’s Euro 2020 dream at Wembley.
There was even more controversy in the build-up to the penalty being given, after two balls were on the pitch before Sterling made the darting run into the box.
Hjulmand was unhappy there was a second ball on the pitch at the time of the foul but also insisted it was not a penalty.
He added: ‘It was a penalty which should not have been a penalty. It is something which annoys me right now. We are very disappointed.
‘You cannot pass by the ball on the pitch which has so much influence on the game.
Denmark manager Kasper Hjulmand admitted he feels ‘bitter’ by the way England won
The Denmark players were in tears at the end after their fairytale Euros run came to an end
‘I know it sounds weird right now but I cannot help having these feelings. One thing is to lose a game, it happens, but losing this way is disappointing because these guys have fought a lot.
‘It feels bitter but we have to digest this before we can discuss these feelings. It’s a bitter way to leave the tournament.
‘The way we lost makes it harder to understand why we lost. I have to be careful with what I say. We have an amazing group and we definitely can do something great again.
‘Maybe it is easier for me to say how I feel in a few days.’
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