Aston Villa news: Ex-Fifa official issues 'bizarre' claim as controversial John McGinn footage analysed
Arman Hovhannisyan could have had a straight red card for his headbutt on Aston Villa midfielder John McGinn as Armenia lost 4-1 to Scotland in the Nations League on Tuesday (14 June).
That is the view of ex-Fifa and Premier League referee Keith Hackett, speaking exclusively to Football Insider about the “bizarre” incident that saw Hovhannisyan shown a second yellow card.
The 28-year-old was initially shown a first yellow card for a foul on Everton’s Nathan Patterson before he was cautioned again for the altercation with McGinn.
As per Uefa regulations, even if he had been shown a straight red card, the defender would still only serve a one-game suspension in the Nations League.
“It is bizarre because he thinks ‘I’ve done that one, got a yellow card and that’s the end of the matter’,” Hackett said after analysing the footage with Football Insider correspondent Connor Whitley.
“See he’s gone in and committed a second offence. He’s used his head. I’m quite clear that he’s committed two offences here. Either one, he could have had a red.
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“His head goes towards the Scottish player. Look where the referee’s positioned, he’s spot on. Well done the ref, he’s shown courage.
“That, for me, could have been a red. The referee’s got it right.
“This referee’s applied the law correctly. They live on ‘I’ve just given one so I’ll take a bit’. But the referee is quite clear here.
“The thing here is the referee has maintained his concentration. That player has used his head, and at the least, that’s a yellow card.”