Ex-Super Eagles striker reacts to huge call to award Southampton a penalty in 3-3 draw v Spurs

Published: March 18, 2023
Ex-Super Eagles striker reacts to huge call to award Southampton a penalty in 3-3 draw v Spurs

Former Super Eagles striker Efan Ekoku has had his say on the decision of the referee to award a penalty to Southampton during the closing minutes of their crazy 3-3 draw with Tottenham Hotspur at the St Mary's Stadium on Saturday evening. 


Nigeria international Paul Onuachu was a non-playing substitute for the second time in four matches, while Joe Aribo and England youth teamer of Nigerian descent Samuel Edozie were omitted from the matchday 20.


Tottenham Hotspur seemed like they were coasting to a win after Ivan Perisic found the net from the edge of the box in the 74th minute, but Theo Walcott pulled one back three minutes later to give Southampton hope. 


Simon Hooper pointed to the spot after Pape Sarr was deemed to have felled Ainsley Maitland-Niles in the 89th minute. 


Ekoku, who was on commentary duties for the Premier League world feed, called it quite quickly that the penalty could be overturned, claiming that the Senegal international did not make contact with the Arsenal loanee.


"Sarr is blind side, he didn't see Maitland-Niles coming behind. I think he misses it. Maitland-Niles takes the ball, does he make any contact? I can see this being overturned, I'm not sure there's any real contact, " Ekoku opined. 


"It is a wild swing, the ball gets taken away from him and he didn't see Maitland-Niles coming on the blind side. There's no contact there."


After the video assistant referee upheld the penalty decision, Ekoku sang a different tune, stating : "The guilty man is really not complaining at all, maybe there was a brush to the ankle or the back of the leg or calf of Maitland-Niles.


"Whichever way VAR decided that contact was made and instructed the referee not to go to the monitor."


Despite the precious point earned against Tottenham, Southampton remain bottom of the Premier League heading into the international break, sitting two points from safety. 



Ifeanyi Emmanuel 



Photo Credit : southamptonfc.com



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