Burnley boss Sean Dyche - Wolves penalty was “at least a bit contentious”

Sean Dyche
Sean Dyche

Sean Dyche felt Wolves’ last gasp penalty equaliser - with VAR backing up referee Craig Pawson’s decision to point to the spot - was “at least a bit contentious.”

Dyche was delighted with his players’ performance at Molineux, as Ashley Barnes gave them the lead with a stunning fourth goal of the season.

And they had golden chances to increase their advantage, as Ben Mee hit the bar, Chris Wood squandered a one on one, and Barnes and Westwood also went close in the second half.

But Wolves stole a point after Erik Pieters was adjudged to have gone through Raul Jimenez to clear the ball late in injury time.

Pawson pointed to the spot, and VAR backed him up, with Jimenez slotting in the penalty.

Dyche said: “I thought it was a good performance, particularly first half, it was a very pleasing display in so many ways.

“We should have gone in further in front than 1-0, kept them to minimal, and second half managed the game quite well, we expected a reaction - we saw that on Monday night against Man U, and the early part they started quite quickly, but it faded for 10 or 15 minutes, and I thought the game was settling into a rhythm.

“They managed to get a grip of the game late on, but apart from hitting the post, I can’t remember Popey having a save to make.

“I don’t think they opened us up, Popey was good, the back four were good, the shape, and I thought we’d see the game out, but eventually a big decision goes against us.”

On the penalty, Dyche admitted: “I’ve seen it back, I’m a big believer in VAR, so there’s no problem with that. I don’t know the ruling on how many turn over a referee’s decision, it’s a tough one, I’ve seen it from a couple of different angles and Erik has gone to play the ball, and their lad has lunged back in front of him to almost make him bring him down.

“I think that’s tough to decide, they can get not given, or overturned, but I don’t know the official line if the referee has given it, are they really going to overturn it, or do so if it’s not.

“I think that was a close one, I think it will be a big debate, and we know there are going to be some, I’ve never said VAR will get everything right, there will be some awkward and contentious ones, but we’re just maybe a bit unfortunate.

“Ours is at least a bit contentious.”

Every point in the Premier League, and one at Molineux, is hard-earned though, and Dyche added: “You come away disappointed, but I’m not disappointed in the performance, everyone kept telling me what a tough start we’ve got, and I think we’ve had three really good performances.

“We took the game on today, as we did at Arsenal, on the front foot, mixed the play well, we were very effective with our play as well, first half particularly, scored a great goal, superb strike from Barnesy, Woody has a chance one v one, and he got brought down on the edge of the box, I don’t know how that’s not a foul when I see what I see in the Premier League, that was a bit strange.

“That’s obviously a key position.

“Barnesy has a chance second half, slides it wide, Westy from the edge of the box, lifts it over the top corner, to come here and do that is not easy.

“We know they’re a good side.

“So a lot of good things about the mentality of the side, and we look a different animal from the early part of last season.

“It was a tough season last year, and the players have learned from that, they’ve come back with a real edge to their performances, and that’s the whole group.

“I know it’s early season, but you want see those signs.”