Ex-Premier League referee reveals if Everton should have conceded a penalty vs Nottingham Forest

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The Everton midfielder was involved in a coming together in the box against Nottingham Forest at the weekend.

Sky Sports' Ref Watch panel believe Everton's Abdoulaye Doucoure was lucky to avoid being punished for his foul on Ryan Yates over the weekend.

Everton edged out Steve Cooper's side in a hard-fought victory which saw Dwight McNeil earn all three points with a brilliant strike as earned their fourth away win in seven games as they moved up to 18th in the table following their 10-point deduction.

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But it could have been different if referee Paul Tierney had given a penalty for Doucoure's alleged pull-back of midfielder Yates. VAR checked the incident but there was no action taken. Plus, Tierney wasn't asked to go to the pitch-side monitor to review it as well.

Jamie Redknapp on the Sky Sports coverage at full-time called the decision 'blatant' and former referee Dermot Gallagher agreed with the pundit, claiming it was a penalty for three clear reasons.

"VAR did check it and felt there wasn't enough to give a penalty - I think it is a penalty, and I think it is a penalty for three reasons. Firstly, he never once looks at the ball, he has no interest in the ball. Second, I think he has his a hold of his shirt for far too long, he doesn't just feel for it and let it go. And thirdly, he trips him up as well so I think it's a penalty."

Both Stephen Warnock and Sue Smith unanimously agreed it was also a penalty and it's clear that Doucoure was lucky to avoid any punishment for that particular moment.

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Looking at previous similar decisions in the Premier League, there was a lot of controversy around a decision to award a penalty for Manchester City in November when Rasmus Hojlund was penalised for holding Rodri in the box during a free-kick. That incident perhaps has influenced decisions since, as the argument from Gallagher at the time was that 'people will ask how many we're going to give now if you see this given' and that certainly makes sense here. Forest boss Cooper was incensed with the decision following the game: ‘If you look at the penalty given to Brighton against us last week, the one today is twice that,’ Cooper said. "I’m not going to hide behind it but it is a penalty. That’s why referees are getting a load of stick."

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