Gary O’Neil warned referees to be “careful” when officiating Wolves matches after Anthony Taylor was dropped to the second tier due to his mistakes.
This came after a contentious penalty kick was awarded to Newcastle in a 2-2 draw with Wolves, leading to Gary O’Neil’s frustration. Although replays suggested there was no contact, referee Anthony Taylor awarded a penalty, claiming that Hwang Hee-chan had tripped Fabian Schar.
A five-member PGMOL independent panel, responsible for reviewing officials’ decisions, supported VAR in reversing the call by a 4-1 majority and unanimously agreed that the penalty should not have been given.
As a consequence of his performance, Taylor has been demoted to officiate a Championship match between Preston and Coventry.
Gary O’Neil speaks about the three referees demoted to Championship
Gary O’Neil said at a press conference: “I saw the numbers in the review they do on Tuesday which was 5-0 in favour of a penalty not being given on-field, and 4-1 in favor of it not being overturned by VAR.
“I think Anthony Taylor’s doing the Championship game this weekend – that’s three referees who’ve been relegated on the back of refereeing us, so you need to be careful when you referee Wolves because you could end up getting relegated the following week!
“That’s Man Utd, Luton and Wolves now. I haven’t received an apology and I don’t want one. They’re not going to help, but hopefully, the level improves.”
Taylor’s demotion follows similar actions taken against other referees. Simon Hooper was demoted to officiate Leicester’s match against Rotherham after the Wolves’ 1-0 loss to Manchester United on the opening day, where they were denied a penalty when Andre Onana elbowed Sasa Kalajdzic.
Another referee, Josh Smith, was officiating his first Premier League match but was later dismissed back to the EFL after awarding Luton a questionable penalty for handball in Wolves’ 1-1 draw in September.