Arsenal attacker Kai Havertz appeared to be lucky to still be on the pitch during the loss to Newcastle United – and his response to the incident .
The Gunners lost in controversial circumstances at St James’ Park against the Magpies, with Anthony Gordon’s winner coming under the scrutiny of VAR.
Gordon bundled in what proved to be the strike which separated the two sides, but it had to be checked for three different aspects by VAR before it was confirmed as a goal.
The ball initially looked to have run out of play before Joe Willock got there, but VAR ruled that there was ‘inconclusive evidence’, before checking a foul on Arsenal defender Gabriel Magalhaes.
After that was cleared, officials looked into an offside against Gordon before the green light was given to award the goal.
The nature of the winner drew the ire of Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta, as he labelled it an ‘absolute disgrace’ and embarked on quite a rant in his post-match press conference following the controversial loss.
There were other incidents in the game too, before Gordon’s goal, which had been major talking points.
When the clash was still goalless in the first half, the Gunners were perhaps fortunate not to be reduced to 10 men.
Havertz produced a late, lunging tackle on Newcastle’s Sean Longstaff, which led to players surrounding the Gunners man as referee Stuart Attwell debated his decision, before brandishing a yellow card rather than dismissing the German international.
Newcastle boss Eddie Howe saw the tackle from close range and admitted after the game that the Gunners man was fortunate to only be shown a yellow card for the incident.
He said: “We were close to the incident. It looked high and potentially dangerous. That was my initial thought.
“He was probably lucky to get just a yellow.”
He added: “For me that was the only moment in the game where I could see a red card. You might tell me differently but that’s the only moment I could see.
“I thought there was a lot of needless yellow cards, I didn’t think there needed to be that many apart from the Havertz tackle, I don’t think that may bad ones.”
During the first half too, Havertz made his feelings clear to the Newcastle bench, as he was spotted shushing Magpies assistant boss Jason Tindall, which will no doubt have endeared himself to the Arsenal fanbase.
Kai Havertz ‘shhing’ Newcastle United’s assistant manager, Jason Tindall during the first-half at St James’ Park.
Never change Kai. We love you. 🤫 pic.twitter.com/VFu8kEHt3Z
— now.arsenal (@now_arsenaI) November 4, 2023
Though he stayed on the pitch and had that moment, Havertz ended up on the losing side and Newcastle had the last laugh.