‘Referee sent off West Ham player for kicking the ball’ — Arsenal legend claims

Photo: Justin Setterfield/Getty Images

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Chelsea defeated West Ham 1-0 at the London Stadium on Saturday evening, and the highlight of the game was the red card issued to Fabian Balbuena.

While trying to clear the ball, Balbuena planted his studs on Chilwell’s calf, and it really looked horrible. Referee Chris Kavanagh was told by VAR Michael Oliver to consult the pitchside monitor to view the incident, and Kavanagh deemed it to be a red card.

Many pundits had gone on to criticise the decision, and Arsenal legend Ian Wright laughed off the decision and wrote on twitter: ‘Sent off for kicking the ball’, with a couple of laughing emojis added to it.

Meanwhile, Gary Lineker also criticised the decision as he wrote on twitter: ‘How can VAR and the referee get it so wrong? It’s just baffling. Utterly baffling.’

Crystal Palace star Andros Townsend criticised the decision as he wrote on twitter: ‘I can’t believe it….. I’ve just witnessed a man get sent off by clearing the ball…. this has to stop….. THE GAMES Gone.’

Meanwhile, Chelsea boss Thomas Tuchel insisted that the decision wasn’t wrong and that it was between a yellow and red card.

Inasmuch as Balbuena didn’t intend to hit Chilwell and that his actions weren’t malicious, it was a career threatening incident to the Chelsea left wing-back.

What do you think of the referee’s decision?

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Chelsea is more than just a football club to me; it's a passion I share, and my affinity with the Chelsea badge is one that will last forever. As far as watching my favourite team is concerned, I'd rather miss a meal than miss a Chelsea game.