Hackett digs at Arsenal as Farke fumes over controversy
Daniel Farke can have no complaints with the build-up to the Arsenal goal in their 1-0 win over Norwich City, according to Keith Hackett.
Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, the ex-FIFA and Premier League referee dismissed Farke’s suggestions there was a handball in the build-up to the only goal of the game.
Grant Hanley challenged Buakayo Saka as he attempted to control a pass and the ball deflected up near his arms.
The Norwich players appealed for a handball but they were ignored as Pierre-Emerick Aubemayang finished the move to score Arsenal’s first goal of the Premier League season.
As quoted on the BBC’s Match of the Day programme, Farke claimed Hanley “stopped playing” because he was expecting the whistle to be blown.
“I personally didn’t believe that the player had outstretched his arm,” Hackett told Football Insider correspondent Connor Whitley.
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“There was a protest but for me, it was ill-founded. I don’t think it warranted stopping the game. I didn’t see it as a deliberate handball.
“What we’ve got to understand now, is the law appertaining to that.
“I think the manager was clutching at straws trying to hide his disappointment of losing the game.
“I think, on this occasion, Michael Oliver refereed really well and he’s in top form. I was pleased to see that his upcoming game in the Champions League is Barcelona versus Bayern Munich. That’s a clear indication of his form, not just here but in Europe.
“For the player, there’s an old phrase of ‘play to the whistle’ so we should remind them of that.
“It’s just frustration. Perhaps, with the state of Arsenal, he was expecting some points from the game.
“But don’t blame the referee for the poor performance of your team.”