This is the decisive scene: Raheem Sterling enters the Danish penalty area, is surrounded by three opponents and falls into physical contact with Matthias Jensen. Referee Danny McClellan (Netherlands) did not hesitate to whistle for England in extra time at the European Championship semi-finals at Wembley Stadium in London. The outfielder protested, the favorite was happy – and Caspar Schmidt slammed the edge of the penalty area for Harry Kane after saving the net 2-1. The timeless sequence that caused a lot of discussion after the game.


“You can see the connection – the knee against the calf,” said former Bundesliga referee Manuel Groove. ZDF: “But Sterling goes into the fight with the intention of imposing a fine. The referees are often guided by the forms of the case. And you can see that this is not enough in terms of the form of the case.” Also, the 47-year-old pointed out that there was a second ball on the field before the action game. “It may have distracted the referee for a moment.”

Due to contact and immediate decision, McClellan could not be violated by VAR. After all, there is no clear misjudgment about the situation. “You could theoretically pay the fine,” Groof said: “I would have been allowed to play. For me personally, this decision has been very difficult.” Sterling naturally saw it differently. When asked if this decision was reasonable, the England winger replied succinctly: “Of course!”

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