Erik ten Hag argued that Manchester United’s 0-0 draw with Southampton was influenced by the referee” after three disputed decisions.
United were frustrated in their pursuit of three points against the south coast side and may consider themselves fortunate to end with a point given Southampton’s chances to win the match through Theo Walcott and James Ward-Prowse.
However, some key refereeing judgements put United on the back foot.
Kyle Walker-Peters also caught Bruno Fernandes in the box and Armel Bella-Kotchap appeared to handle a cross, but neither incident saw United awarded a penalty.
Speaking to Sky Sports, Ten Hag praised his players for showing resilience while down a man.
He said: “Big compliments to the team. They showed big character to play so long with 10. They were physically and mentally strong to get a point.”
The Dutchman also believed his side should have had at least one spot-kick, saying: “Definitely. There’s no doubt. I don’t know why VAR didn’t interrupt.”
Turning to Casemiro, he hinted that the Brazilian was unfairly targeted, not just against Southampton but for his sending off against Crystal Palace when he had his hands around Will Hughes’ neck.
“Casemiro played over 500 games in Europe and never once got a red card. Now he has two in the Premier League,” he said of his player who now faces a four-match ban in domestic football.
“His absence is not the issue. We will deal with that. This game was influenced by the referee.”
Up next for United is the return leg of their Europa League tie with Real Betis, a game Casemiro will be available for. Ten Hag’s side will take a 4-1 lead to Spain on March 16.
The Red Devils then face Fulham in the FA Cup on March 19, before returning to Premier League action against Newcastle United at St James’ Park on April 2.
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