Emre Can and BVB coach Edin Terzic defended referee Martin Petersen’s controversial decision after the 1-0 win against TSG Hoffenheim. The referee had denied the Sinsheimers an alleged penalty in the game.
“It’s not a penalty. He’s not up to speed. I stand and he stands. He accepts the contact much later. That’s why I think the referee made a good decision. Many referees would certainly blow the whistle, but I think it’s allowed such a scene can never be a penalty,” Can said after the final whistle sky.
The German-Turk brought down TSG defender Kevin Akpoguma in the penalty area in the 50th minute of the game. Referee Petersen initially gave Hoffenheim a free kick, but was then ordered to the sidelines by VAR for a closer look. Instead of a penalty, however, Petersen decided on a referee ball.
The right decision from the point of view of BVB coach Edin Terzic. “It wasn’t easy at the moment and at the speed to make an immediate decision. But when you see Akpoguma keep fighting for the ball – even he felt that that was a contact that was never enough for a penalty,” said the Dortmund coach and praised Petersen for his judgement: “There are certainly many referees who do not have the courage not to award a penalty.”
On the other hand, there was criticism from Hoffenheim. “Akpoguma turns, Can hits his foot, he falls. What did he give then? Referee ball. You can be a Dortmund fan or a Hoffenheim fan, but a referee ball? I don’t know. I don’t understand it, for me it is that’s a clear foul,” said TSG defender Kevin Vogt.
Petersen himself explained the scene as follows: “I spotted a push on the field, considered it punishable and decided on a free kick. The VAR checked that and found that the contact took place inside the penalty area and that there was also contact on the foot. I then looked at it again and saw that pushing wasn’t enough for a free-kick. And the foot contact was more of an underfoot contact, which wasn’t enough for me either. That’s how I got to the dropped ball.”