Keith Hackett was left ‘gobsmacked’ when Jamie Vardy wasn’t sent off during Leicester City’s 1-1 draw with Arsenal last Tuesday.

The former FIFA referee, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, insisted the Foxes forward intentionally kicked defender Shkodran Mustafi in the face and that VAR should have intervened.

Vardy levelled for Leicester in the 84th minute during a controversial 1-1 draw at the Emirates Stadium.

The Gunners were reduced to 10 men when Eddie Nketiah was shown a straight red card upon a VAR review for a high challenge on James Justin and Hackett ‘couldn’t believe’ Vardy escaped the same punishment.

“Let me make it quite clear Jamie Vardy should have been sent off”, he told Football Insider.

“That was a very clear and deliberate act, in my opinion he knew what he was doing.

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“I was absolutely gobsmacked that VAR didn’t intervene, my phone started buzzing after that. I had Mark Halsey on the phone saying ‘how can that not be a red card?’.

“I just couldn’t believe it, he’s had a look at where the player is and he’s whacked him with his boot!

“I’m getting inundated with emails asking why is the standard of refereeing in England declining so badly, let me tell you this: it’s through lack of leadership and lack of firm management.

“You can quote me on this, the PGMOL is being run like Butlin’s holiday camp!”

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta echoed Hackett’s verdict after the match and was left furious after the Leicester striker was allowed to stay on the pitch.

In other Arsenal news, this is the ‘real’ reason for Matteo Guendouzi’s exile.

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