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Manchester City v Manchester United

Man City left furious as Fred isn't penalised for handball in Manchester derby with VAR taking centre stage again

21:38 GMT+3 07/12/2019
Manchester City Pep Guardiola Fred Man Utd
The Blues thought they should have had a spot-kick shortly before half-time, but another big call from technology went against Pep Guardiola's side

Manchester United saw VAR award them one penalty in a derby date with Manchester City, with the Blues left incensed after seeing another call against Fred waved away.

Marcus Rashford benefited from the introduction of technology as the Red Devils were given the opportunity to break the deadlock at the Etihad Stadium from the spot.

Play was initially waved on after the England international had gone down under pressure from Bernardo Silva.

A matter of minutes later, City felt they should have seen a similar decision go in their favour as half-time approached.

United midfielder Fred slid in to block a cross from the right, with the ball striking his arm as he went to ground.

Appeals from the Blues fell on deaf ears, with VAR checks also leaving them empty-handed and feeling another sense of injustice.

Pep Guardiola, who has seen a number of decisions go against his side in recent times, made his feelings known to fourth official Mike Dean.

The Catalan delivered a similar outpouring of emotion during a visit to Liverpool in November, with two penalty claims waved away that day.

Not everybody, though, shared Guardiola’s opinion when it came to Fred’s defensive duties for United.

Former Premier League referee Dermot Gallagher told Premier League Productions of the decision not to point to the spot: “I think with the way the law is set up it’s not a penalty.

“It hits his arm no doubt about it but he’s on the floor, his arm’s close to his body. It strikes him, nothing more. And the referee quite rightly doesn’t give a penalty and the VAR backs him up.”

United legend Ryan Giggs added: "Yeah. Definitely no penalty."

Belgium boss Roberto Martinez said: “I can see both ways. I know the law and that’s a little bit interpretation.

“Again, is Fred using the arm because he’s falling to the ground? Then it’s a natural position. But the interpretation could be that it’s outside his body so it’s one of those actions where you need to take what the referee says.”

Former United favourite Giggs feels that the call earlier in the game to give Rashford a penalty was the right decision, with a man who has now matched his personal-best goal return for a season clearly bundled over in the box.

The Welshman added: “Yeah I thought it was a penalty.

“It happened pretty quickly but Silva didn’t get the ball and he just catches Marcus. That was my first instinct that it was a penalty in real time.

“I think from where the referee is, it’s probably not as clear for him. But from behind the goal, Bernardo Silva clearly catches Marcus and doesn’t get the ball. For my money, it’s a penalty.”