William Saliba’s honest admission on the Martin Odegaard handball incident may well upset Mikel Arteta.
Saliba was named Man of the Match in Arsenal’s 1-1 draw with Liverpool at Anfield, where Mo Salah cancelled out Gabriel Magalhaes’ early opener.
The result means Arsenal remain one point clear ahead of Liverpool at the top of the table for Christmas.
But there was huge controversy in the meeting as Liverpool were controversially denied a penalty in the first half.
The ball struck the hand of skipper Odegaard inside the 18-yard box while he slipped but referee Chris Kavanagh did not point to the spot.
The incident went to VAR but the original on-field decision stood, much to the frustration of Liverpool fans.
At half-time, Sky Sports shared PGMOL’s explanation that the penalty was not given as it was “not a clear and obvious error”, with it being claimed that Odegaard’s arm was moving towards the body.
However, Arsenal defender Saliba admitted that his side got away with one and that a spot-kick should be have been awarded.
Asked if Arsenal should have conceded a penalty, the Frenchman told ViaPlay.
“Of course, of course it was a penalty. But I am not the referee.”
— The Anfield Wrap (@TheAnfieldWrap) December 23, 2023
Unlike in recent times when decisions have gone against his team, Mikel Arteta did not place much of a focus on the incident in his post-match interviews.
However, Jurgen Klopp was baffled as to how the handball wasn’t given by those in Stockley Park.
“I’m pretty sure someone will explain it to me and say it wasn’t a handball but I don’t know how,” Klopp toldSky Sports.
“I won’t say the referee can’t see it because I have no clue where he was at that moment. But when somebody sits in their office, how can they not come to the conclusion that it might be worth having another look.”
Arsenal take on West Ham on Thursday, while Liverpool travelling to Burnley.