Liverpool fans call Craig Pawson’s decision not to book Aaron Cresswell a ‘complete and utter joke’


‘One of the worst refereeing performances’: Liverpool fans brand Craig Pawson’s controversial decision not to send Aaron Cresswell off for a nasty challenge on Jordan Henderson as a ‘complete and utter joke’

  • West Ham faced Liverpool at the London Stadium in Sunday’s league game
  • VAR was called into action early into the game, first for Alisson’s own goal
  • Minutes later Aaron Cresswell’s challenge of Jordan Henderson was checked
  • But referee Craig Pawson did not book the left-back for the reckless tackle 


Referee Craig Pawson has come under fire for his controversial decision over a potential ‘season-ending’ challenge from Aaron Cresswell on Jordan Henderson.

VAR was called into action early in West Ham’s league game against Liverpool. First for see if Alisson had been fouled by Angelo Ogbonna in the lead-up to the goalkeeper’s own goal, then minutes later it was checking Creswell’s challenge on the Liverpool skipper. 

The West Ham left-back caught Henderson nastily with a follow through but Pawson didn’t award the Reds a free kick or book Cresswell for the foul after consulting VAR. 

The decision was met with anger from fans on social media, with some claiming Cresswell should have been given his marching orders for the challenge. 

Jordan Henderson was lucky to escape unscathed from a challenge by Aaron Cresswell

One fan branded Pawson’s decision as ‘one of the worst refereeing performances’ they have seen.

‘This feels like one of the worst refereeing performances I’ve seen in a long time,’ they wrote.

‘No foul on Alisson, no red card on Cresswell (not even a foul given), corners not being given despite looking clear.’

One fan claimed it was 'one of the worst refereeing performances' they had seen in a while

One fan claimed it was ‘one of the worst refereeing performances’ they had seen in a while

While, Liverpool fan site Anfield Watch claimed Henderson was lucky to escape from the challenge unscathed, branding the tackle ‘season-ending’. 

‘Jordan Henderson is very, very lucky. Could have been a season-ending challenge that from Cresswell,’ they tweeted. 

‘The standard of reffing in the premier league is pathetic,’ another Red posted. ‘Any other day that goal doesn’t stand and Cresswell is sent off for that challenge. So inconsistent!! Pawson has always been an awful ref.’

Meanwhile, another described the referee’s decision as a ‘complete utter joke’.

‘That was a season ending tackle on Henderson by Cresswell but guess what? Nothing was given. Complete utter joke,’ they said.

Some football fans took to Twitter to brand Craig Pawson's decision 'pathetic' and a 'joke'

Some football fans took to Twitter to brand Craig Pawson’s decision ‘pathetic’ and a ‘joke’

Other football fans took to social media to express their dismay at Pawson’s failure to book the Hammers defender. 

Many were shocked that he escaped a sending off as they declared the challenge was a ‘yellow minimum’ as ‘it’s a leg-breaking challenge’.

‘Can’t believe Cresswell got away without a yellow even. Should have seen red,’ one argued. 

‘That challenge from Cresswell was reckless could of swore I saw Holgate of Everton get a Red Card from almost the exact same challenge,’ said another. 

Many fans were in disbelief at Pawson's failure to show Cresswell a yellow card

Many fans were in disbelief at Pawson’s failure to show Cresswell a yellow card

TV pundit Jamie Redknapp agreed with the outraged fans describing the tackle as ‘aggressive and reckless’. 

‘I hate seeing players get sent off but that is a reckless challenge,’ the former Liverpool man said on Sky Sports at half-time.

‘His foot is high. It’s aggressive. I’ve seen players get sent off for a lot worse than that. I think what does help is that Jordan Henderson got up so quickly. He did him a right favour.

‘It was an aggressive challenge. Yeah definitely [it should have been a red]. If it had been given as a red, I don’t think there would have been any complaints whatsoever. 

‘I think it does help when you’ve got someone who gets up so quickly. If they roll around, they stay down, it might have been different. I think he’s very lucky there Cresswell.’

But his co-pundit for the clash, Jack Wilshere disagreed. The former Arsenal midfielder argued the challenge looked worse slowed down and didn’t merit a red card.

‘Not for me I think if you slow it down, it’s always going to look worse,’ he said.

‘It’s a tough tackle tough. The first ten minutes of the game. Cresswell is a tough player he wants to let them know that they’re in for a game.’ 

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