Keith Hackett was left “amazed” by Mike Dean’s decision to award Bournemouth a penalty in their 5-2 defeat to Man United.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the former FIFA referee claimed that he was “surprised” to see the official point to the spot following an apparent handball by Eric Bailly.
A video review of the incident determined the offence had taken place inside the penalty area and upheld Dean’s decision.
Hackett analysed the footage and insisted that the handball was “clearly” not deliberate, adding Dean had been supported by his “mates” at Stockley Park.
Speaking to Football Insider, he said: “Mike Dean pulled a rabbit out of the hat. He surprised everyone after the ball struck the shoulder of an Eric Bailly.
“He took everyone by surprise when he pointed to the spot, it was clearly not a deliberate handball and I was amazed the VAR supported it.
“Clearly they haven’t deemed it a serious and obvious error and they’ve gone with the referee.
“There was only Mike Dean that thought it was a handball and his mates supported him. His mate was probably sat in the room thinking ‘oh well it’s Mike Dean he never gets anything wrong.’
“He is a good referee don’t get me wrong, but the VAR have gone ‘oh well let’s support Mike.'”
Speaking after the match, Man United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer stressed that his side didn’t let the incident affect them.
The Reds remain 5th in the table following their victory, just two points off 4th-placed Chelsea.
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