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East Stand View: Headbutting is Fine

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No need to go to VAR when headbutting is acceptable.

MLS: FC Dallas at Seattle Sounders FC Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

This wasn’t going to be a pretty game of soccer, and in the match predictions I had already assumed a loss. So my expectations started out very low when turning on the TV to Fox late on Sunday night. A trip to Seattle has never been kind to Oscar Pareja as the commentators pointed out on a few occasions. It had been raining most of the weekend, so this Sunday was especially lazy with the grey clouds in the sky. It was time to lay in bed or sit back and watch the Hoops play in what seemed like a packed house in Seattle. The match started out well until...

Set Pieces are Dumb....

When we’re not able to defend them well, set pieces are incredibly annoying. The other take on them, is that when we give up so many set pieces, we can’t defend them all. 11 corners in the first half of a match is an incredible number. That amount of corners conceded is a good recipe to get you scored on in most cases.

Changing gears though, that foul on Urruti was absolutely a penalty. Although, someone has got to tell Urruti that embellishing a legit foul likely lowers the likelihood of it getting called in your favor. Just go down humbly man. Little did I know, that wasn’t the last I would be in vocal disagreement with our referee for the match...

Extracurricular Activities

Ruidiaz headbutted Zeigler. No if and or buts about it. Now that we moved past the fact that Ruidiaz 100% without a doubt headbutted the FC Dallas player, we can move to why it wasn’t punished during the game. It could be that following the precedent set by the Josef Martinez incident where he did the same thing and received no red card, that MLS finds headbutting to be just fine. Then there’s the likely scenario that the assistant referee only saw the reaction and not the entire incident, and that head referee Ted Unkel had complete faith in his AR that he felt there was no need to go to VAR.

If we go with that likely scenario, then it goes down to how likely each referee is to go to VAR, as it’s the referee’s discretion on when and how often he uses VAR. Here it’s safe to blame Ted for not going to VAR to review the incident. Then again, Ted has been around a while, and is an old school kind of guy who doesn’t seem to think VAR first. Even though it wouldn’t have changed the outcome of the game in all likelihood, it would’ve been punished correctly had it gone to review. Which I also thought red card scenarios were supposed to be reviewed, guess not. If we don’t see the DisCo come out with suspensions for both players, THEN, and only then should we really get the pitchforks out and sharpened.

And finally, your fan quote of the night: “Ted Unkel? More like Ted FLUNKel. Got him.” -/u/dances_with_ronaldo

What were your overall thoughts on the match? Do you feel like Urruti would’ve gotten that penalty call if he didn’t do so theatrically? Do you think Ted Unkel should have gone straight to VAR for review of the incident? Let me know in the comments below!