By George Overhill

15th Nov, 2022 | 6:40am

Dermot Gallagher weighs in on Leeds United vs Tottenham flashpoints where Tim Sherwood cried foul

Dermot Gallagher has come down on the side of referee Michael Salisbury for two controversial calls that went in favour of Leeds United at Tottenham on Saturday.

The game in north London finished 4-3 to the home side, with the Whites down to 10 men after Tyler Adams’ second yellow late on, but Tim Sherwood felt they should have already had Marc Roca sent off for a high foot jumping into a challenge with Eric Dier, calling it an “horrendous tackle” that should have been a “straight red” on Sky Sports Soccer Saturday (12 November, 4.08pm).

He also felt Rodrigo’s goal to put Leeds United 3-2 up should have been brought back by VAR for a Liam Cooper foul on Rodrigo Bentancur, saying (4.35pm) “I think it’s a foul in the build up, Jeff”, but just as neither were called on the day, Gallagher disagreed with Sherwood’s position as well.

Speaking on Sky Sports’ Ref Watch on Monday (14 November) he said of the Roca challenge: “I think his foot’s high and, if he follows through, it’s a red card.

“But when you watch, he just comes down his leg. It’s not serious foul play and not a red card.”

For the potential infringement in the build up to Rodrigo’s second strike he added: “I don’t think it’s a foul and, even if it was a foul, it would be considered too far back. He’s pushed the ball too far and I think he just throws himself to the ground.

“The referee’s got the best view – he’s very close – and he actually waves to him, ‘Get up’.”

Backed

They were both calls that could have gone either way depending on the referee and the occasion, but neither seemed totally egregious oversights.

Spurs got away with a clearer one for their first goal via Harry Kane, with Illan Meslier bundled into his own net seconds prior.

It was the kind of open game that was ripe for all sorts of debatable incidents, and while things fell in United’s favour for two, the crucial third didn’t.

So much of what the Whites produced at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium was very impressive, and it caught Antonio Conte’s side on the hop multiple times.

But for the second week running, much of what was good was counterbalanced by what was bad, primarily defensively, but unlike the win over Bournemouth by the same scoreline, the balance tipped in the opposition’s favour this time.

The past three games have taken the team into the World Cup break on a much brighter note, but there is evidently a lot of work to be done still to make this team operate sustainably.

In other Leeds United news, a BBC Sport pundit accused one set of Whites players of making unreasonable demand of their teammates in the Spurs game.