- ‘It’s not the first time and will not be the last,’ says Italian
- Solskjær unsure of rule that granted United’s reprieve
Carlo Ancelotti claimed he should not have been sent off and VAR should have allowed Everton a stoppage‑time victory against Manchester United as the Goodison Park meeting ended in controversy.
Everton’s manager was shown a red card after the final whistle by the referee, Christopher Kavanagh, for demanding an explanation over the decision to disallow Harry Maguire’s own goal in the third minute of stoppage time.
The prone Gylfi Sigurdsson was clearly in an offside position when Dominic Calvert-Lewin’s shot struck the United defender but lifted his legs out of the way of the ball as the deflection wrong‑footed David de Gea. The assistant referee initially awarded the goal only for VAR to rule that Sigurdsson was in De Gea’s line of sight and therefore interfering with play.
Ancelotti, who spoke to Kavanagh in the referee’s room after his dismissal, said: “I asked for an explanation after the game. There was a misunderstanding on the pitch and he sent me off. After that I spoke with him calmly in the dressing room. I want to keep our conversation private and now he will make a report for the FA and we will see.
“I didn’t disrespect him but I can understand because, for the referee, there were a lot of important decisions at the end of the game. But I didn’t disrespect him. It was a difficult decision because they checked the position of Gylfi, and it was offside, but in our opinion it didn’t affect the vision of the goalkeeper. In their opinion it affected the vision and movement of the goalkeeper.”
Asked if he had been sent off before in his managerial career, the Italian laughed and said: “It is not the first time and will not be the last. I never disrespected him. It can happen. At the end of the game I was a little bit nervous and maybe the referee was also. At the end of the game we spoke friendly. If I am banned, I will be disappointed but the stand at Stamford Bridge [where Everton visit next weekend] is near the dugout so I will be there.”
Ole Gunnar Solskjær admitted he was not sure of the rule that enabled his United team to extend their unbeaten run to eight matches. The manager also defended De Gea after the goalkeeper’s latest error gifted Calvert-Lewin a third-minute goal.
“I trust David 100%,” Solskjær said. “He knows, but the way he made amends at the end and saved Sigurdsson’s shot shows why that, for me, David is the best goalkeeper in the world. He went through a difficult patch last season but he has been very good this season. I can’t remember any other mistakes this season apart from the Watford one.”