No matter which team you supported in the Philadelphia Union vs. New England Revolution match on Wednesday, you’d probably argue that some major refereeing decisions hindered your team, and you’d be right.
Both the Revolution and the Union were lucky in getting some no-calls in the box during the game, which easily could have turned the tide of the match, or ended it.
For Union fans, their missed call came early in the game, as Kacper Przybylko attempted to drive past two Revolution defenders, but went down after contact with New England’s Maciel near the penalty spot. New England’s keeper Matt Turner then scooped up the ball and sent it the other way, as Union fans, along with Przybylko, asked for a call in their favor.
Przybylko never got his penalty call, but he was right in asking for it. Maciel clearly tripped Przybylko with a lack of precaution, which means that this call should’ve given the Union a penalty kick in the box. Maciel, however, didn’t deserve any further reprimand (Law 12, Direct Free Kick).
On the other side of the field, Kacper Przybylko’s game-saving goal was called into question, when he took down Turner as they both went up for a cross near the goal line. Turner was unable to secure the ball, and as he went down in a heap, Przybylko put the follow up into the back of the net for Philadelphia, granting them a late goal against New England to save a point.
After the goal, Turner was quickly attended to for a blow to the head, and New England players wanted some sort of call to go their way, and they were also right. Przybylko made contact with Turner’s head with his elbow while going up for the ball, and failed to consider the danger to his opponent during the challenge. However, since Turner didn’t have control of the ball when he was challenged, he didn’t have all the protections of a goalkeeper, which means Przybylko should’ve been called for the striking offense, cautioned (which would’ve been a second yellow), and had the goal overturned (Law 12, Direct Free Kick).
While both teams missed some calls, ultimately the poor officiating evened out, and stole one chance apiece from each team.