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Gary Neville and Ian Wright clash on ITV over ‘disgraceful’ England penalty



Gary Neville and Ian Wright clash on ITV over ‘disgraceful’ England penalty

Ian Wright and Gary Neville disagreed on the penalty awarded to England following a VAR review in the first half of their Euro 2024 semi-final against the Netherlands

Gary Neville disagreed with Ian Wright(ITV)

Gary Neville and Ian Wright argued with each other over the VAR decision to give England a controversial penalty in their Euro 2024 semi-final against the Netherlands.

England went behind just seven minutes into the match in Dortmund when Xavi Simons rifled into the top corner after Declan Rice was dispossessed. But they were level on 18 minutes after Harry Kane was fouled by Denzel Dumfries in the penalty area and buried the resulting spot-kick.

Kane blasted over the bar from a loose ball before being caught by a high foot from the Netherlands right-back. The referee initially waved away the appeal, but the VAR sent him to the pitchside monitor where he reversed his decision.

Speaking on ITV at half-time, Neville said: “As a defender, I think it’s an absolutely disgraceful decision. To have that given against me as a penalty at any time, let alone in such an important game. He just goes in naturally to try and block the shot. It’s not a penalty for me. It’s nowhere near a penalty. I have to say, there weren’t many England players asking for it either.”

But Wright disagreed, describing Dumfries’ challenge as “reckless”. He added: “When you look at the way penalties are given now and the way the game is when we go to VAR, that was reckless.”

Neville shot back: “Reckless? That is not reckless. Oh my God.” Wright continued: “But Gary, he’s given it. That’s why we’ve got VAR. If that was anywhere else on the pitch you’d get a foul for it!”

Lee Dixon summed up the mood on co-commentary for ITV, saying: “I would be astonished if this was given.” His colleague Ally McCoist then cut in: “The fact he’s running over, I’ll be astonished if it isn’t given.”

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