Matty Cash was naive to dive in on Harry Kane and give away a penalty – but the Tottenham superstar makes it hard for refs by “going to ground easily”.

That is the view of ex-Premier League referee Keith Hackett, speaking exclusively to Football Insider about the incident that consigned Villa to defeat on Sunday.

With Kane set to cross the ball from the byline, Cash lunged in and caught the England captain with his trailing leg.

Aston Villa

Mike Dean duly pointed to the spot and Kane converted to net his 17th Premier League goal of the season.

It is the second time Cash has given away a penalty this season. Against Manchester City, he was adjudged to have handled the ball after a header from Gabriel Jesus.

Asked if he felt Cash was naive in his challenge, Hackett told Football Insider correspondent Connor Whitley: “Yes.

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“I don’t think the referee was left with any other choice than to award a penalty kick.

“I think the referee’s experienced enough to judge it and he judged it well. They’re not easy you know because Kane, like many forwards now, does go to the ground easily.

“That makes the task of the referee very difficult and that’s why we have VAR.”

Kane has now scored 27 goals and provided 16 assists in 40 appearances across all competitions this season.

He has 160 Premier League goals under his belt – exactly100 behind Alan Shearer’s league record.

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