Wow: Andre Marriner may have made big error in Man United vs Brighton

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On Thursday night, Manchester United suffered a heartbreaking loss against Brighton & Hove Albion, but things could have gone far worse after a contentious incident.

What transpired on Thursday in Brighton?

The high-flying Seagulls presented a difficult challenge for Erik ten Hag’s team, and they ultimately lost extremely late after Alexis Mac Allister converted a penalty in stoppage time.

However, if a crucial decision had gone in Brighton’s favour, the outcome may have been simpler because United winger Antony might have been dismissed for fighting Lewis Dunk and Mac Allister.

The winger started by kicking Mac Allister, then engaged in a fight with Dunk as Brighton players yelled in frustration. He was finally given a yellow card.

Although there is a case to be made that Antony deserved a red card, referee Andre Marriner decided that a yellow card was adequate for the entire outburst in which he failed to maintain his composure.

Given that Brighton could have played the final 20 minutes with 10 men had they won, the impact of the decision may be less than if United had won.

Sky Sports posted video of the event to Twitter.

Had Marriner made the right choice?

Antony should have received two yellow cards because there were two offenses—the kick-out and the altercation. He could have been admonished for both offences and thus dismissed even though neither warranted a straight red card.

Gabriel Martinelli of Arsenal committed a similar back-to-back offence last season, and Michael Oliver booked him for both crimes and sent him out.

This ought to have established a rule that two bookable offences should still result in two yellow cards, even if one is committed right after another in the same section of play. It may have been a mistake to not fire Antony when he and Dunk got into a fight.

Given that he shouldn’t have been on the field, Brighton would have been justified to feel resentful if Antony had gone on to score for United in the game. The hosts could have found it simpler to determine the winner if United had just been down to ten players.

Antony will be available for United’s trip to West Ham United thanks to Marriner’s decision; if he had been fired, he would have been suspended.

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