‘It was a mugging’: Rio Ferdinand says Switzerland were lucky not to concede a penalty after Aleksandar Mitrovic is manhandled by TWO Swiss defenders
- Rio Ferdinand has hit out at referee Felix Brych for not awarding Serbia a penalty
- Aleksandar Mitrovic was wrestled to the ground by two defenders in the area
- The BBC Sport pundit described the incident as ‘a mugging’ after the Group E tie
- Xherdan Shaqiri helped Switzerland complete the comeback to beat Serbia 2-1
Rio Ferdinand has described the referee’s failure to award Aleksandar Mitrovic a second-half penalty as ‘a mugging’ after the Serbian forward was manhandled in the box by two Swiss defenders.
The game was nicely poised at 1-1 when the Newcastle striker was wrestled to the ground by the Swiss duo, only for referee Felix Brych to wave away the claims with no intervention from VAR.
Rio Ferdinand has hit out at referee Felix Brych for not awarding Serbia a penalty on Friday
Aleksandar Mitrovic (centre) was wrestled to the ground by two defenders in the area
The Serbian forward asked for a penalty after he was pulled down to the ground
The BBC Sport panel were in agreement that it should have been a penalty and questioned why VAR didn’t intervene.
Ferdinand told Gary Lineker after the Group E game: ‘I think it had to go to VAR. I don’t know what the people [VAR] making the decisions are doing but they need to look at themselves because there’s two people wrestling Mitrovic.
‘He’s on his own – one of the defenders doesn’t even look at the ball. He’s [Mitrovic] there in amongst two players. How can he be the person called up for a foul there?
Pablo Zabaleta agreed with Ferdinand that Serbia should have got a penalty in the second half
Ferdinand described the incident as ‘a mugging’ after VAR failed to intervene
Co-host Lineker played devil’s advocate by pointing out that Mitrovic had a hand in the face of one of the defenders when trying to reach the cross but Ferdinand wasn’t having any of it.
‘That’s a mugging on the streets, it’s unbelievable,’ Ferdinand said.
Pablo Zabaleta was in agreement with the former Manchester United defender by saying: ‘It’s a foul – I can’t believe it wasn’t given.
‘I think it is a clear view from the referee and the centre back isn’t even looking at the ball. He’s just holding Mitrovic.’
Xherdan Shaqiri completed the late comeback for the Swiss in the 89th minute after Granit Xhaka scored a fantastic equaliser shortly after half time.
Xherdan Shaqiri helped Switzerland complete the late comeback as they beat Serbia 2-1
Author: Nancy Parker
Nancy Parker is a five time Emmy Award winning journalist and seven time Emmy nominee who has spent almost twenty five years covering news in South Louisiana. She has anchored every prime time newscast at WVUE FOX8 during her twenty year tenure in New Orleans.