Neville calls for PL rule to be scrapped in Arsenal’s Newcastle win

Newcastle V Arsenal: Pictures

Manchester United icon Gary Neville called for the Premier League to scrap one of their rules during his commentary of Arsenal’s 2-0 win away to Newcastle on Sunday. The Gunners came out on top in a feisty encounter thanks to Martin Odegaard’s strike and an own goal from Fabian Schar, but the game was not without its controversy.

There was a significant amount of gamesmanship throughout the 90 minutes while both teams saw tempers boil over on several occasions, with players often clashing and getting into tussles.

Towards the end of the game, substitute Eddie Nketiah attempted to keep the ball in the corner to ensure that the hosts were unable to get a goal back and force a nervous finish for Arsenal, but he was bundled over by Schar and Kieran Trippier.

Nketiah especially took offence to Schar’s involvement and as the pair clashed and had to be separated by their team-mates, Neville felt that the Arsenal striker was harshly punished after Schar instigated the situation between the two.

“I have a theory on these ones,” Neville said on commentary as he reacted to the incident. “If Schar pushes Nketiah which he does, he should get booked and Nketiah shouldn’t. If someone pushes you, you’re entitled to push them back. The instigator should be the one that gets booked.”

Neville was met with plenty of support on social media for his view, as many agreed that a player retaliating should not be given the same punishment as the instigator. On Twitter, @AFCLawsey wrote: “Actually agree with Gary Neville, you shouldn’t be getting booked for pushing back.”

While @KingsOkol1 added: “Gary Neville is 100% right. I’ve said it before but referees need to stop booking both parties whenever there’s an altercation, it’s so lazy.”

@AmyDolphin87 was another to hold the same view as the former United defender. “I agree with Gary Neville there,” they wrote. “When [a] player pushes another player, & that pushes back. The instigator should be booked. As if someone pushes you, your gonna push back.”

The travelling supporters at St James’ Park were furious that the officials did not punish Newcastle enough throughout the game for persistent fouls, as it took well into the second half for the first booking to be brandished despite a feisty encounter that saw Bukayo Saka ask for painkillers after a painful challenge from Bruno Guimaraes.

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