Skip to main content

An entertaining 2:2 draw between Arsenal and Bayern Munich marked by dubious referee decisions

Arsenal and Bayern Munich finished without a winner in a 2:2 draw during the 1st leg of their Champions League quarter-finals. Bukayo Saka put the Gunners in front with a precise strike in the 12th minute, but the Bavarian giants turned the match around before the break with a Serge Gnabry goal and a penalty from Harry Kane. Leandro Trossard rounded off the final score in the 76th minute with a strike from inside the box. The teams left everything to be decided next Wednesday at Allianz Arena in Munich, but referee Glenn Nyberg turned into the main talking point with a couple of dubious decisions.

First, he did not award Bayern a clear penalty in the 67th minute. Bayern Munich’s manager, Thomas Tuchel, criticized the missed call post-game. “The referee made a huge mistake, there was a penalty for handball” Tuchel stated, frustrated by the lack of a call after a player caught the ball after the referee had whistled for play to begin.

The explanation given on the field only intensified Tuchel’s outrage. Bayern’s manager said: “He told our players it was a ‘kid’s mistake’ and he won’t give a penalty for that in a Champions League quarter-final. It’s a horrible, horrible explanation.”

In the final moments of the game, Bukayo Saka sprinted with the ball at his feet towards Manuel Neuer and initiated contact in the penalty box. Nyberg waved to play on, but TNT Sports pundits and former players Rio Ferdinand and Martin Keown were baffled, asking, “How has that not been given!?” Arsenal’s manager Mikel Arteta acted professionally and had to share: “I haven’t seen it (again). The officials said they checked it and it wasn’t a penalty. The decision is made. We can’t change it.”