We’re delighted to welcome former Premier League referee Keith Hackett to the MOT Leeds News team. Each week, Hackett will discuss the big moments from the latest Leeds United games and deliver his verdict on whether his successors got their calls right or wrong…

Keith Hackett has said that Liam Cooper’s challenge on Gabriel Jesus was a definite red and added that he was “very surprised” that Andre Marriner only gave a yellow initially.

He said Cooper was off the ground and out of control and that fits the basic requirements of a red-card offence.

Cooper was sent off after a VAR review saw his yellow card upgraded to a red.

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Talking exclusively to MOT Leeds News Hackett said, “I was very surprised when I first saw this, and I was watching the game, that referee Marriner gave a yellow because it fulfilled all the requirements of a serious foul play challenge.

“Liam Cooper was off the ground, there was intensity and malice in the challenge and there was no other result.

“You knew when VAR came he was going. I thought it was a straightforward red card, no question, no doubt about it.”

Talking about consistency and why George Baldock wasn’t sent off for a terrible challenge on Tyler Roberts last week Hackett said, “Baldock slipped into the challenge last week.

“When a player launches with two feet off the ground he can’t change direction, stop, slow down, he just follows through.

“It’s almost like he’s taken aim and got his man. I think the Baldock challenge was a slip and an accident.”

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We’ve called for consistency but one thing this shows is how it’s almost impossible to achieve it.

Everyone has an opinion and refs are no different. Marriner saw it as a yellow initially.

Talking on The Football Show today (Sky Sports, Monday, 11.am), Sky pundit Stephen Warnock didn’t think it was a red.

Conversely, many pundits have said Baldock should have been sent off for his challenge on Tyler Roberts, which certainly looked out of control.

In other Leeds United news, Dermot Gallagher delivers verdict on 3 controversial incidents in Leeds clash v Man City


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