“You need the referee and VAR to make the calls independently”

Brighton and Hove Albion manager Graham Potter has slammed the referees for caving into pressure from the Manchester United players which led to Lewis Dunk being sent off.

The 30-year-old brought down Anthony Elanga early into the second-half and got himself booked, but the home players weren’t too impressed with a yellow.

However, following a VAR review, referee Peter Banks reversed his initial decision and showed him a red instead.

RED CARD Brighton’s Lewis Dunk is sent off following a challenge on Anthony Elanga, with the decision being confirmed after visiting the Referee Review Area Man Utd 1-0 Brighton (54 mins) #MUNBHA

Potter, though, feels VAR’s intervention wasn’t needed. He said the officiating team should’ve been stronger in the face of aggression from Manchester United’s players.

Speaking to the press after the defeat, he said:

“It was a yellow card live, Webster was there on the cover. It is not clear and obvious. I do not understand the intervention.”

When pressed on the referee being pressured for his decision, he said:

“Asking the question you are answering the question. I do not blame them I am not being critical it is what it is. They have to do their bit for the team but you need the referee and VAR to make the calls independently.”

Brighton had Manchester United on the ropes in the first half

Dunk’s red card came just minutes after Cristiano Ronaldo had opened the scoring for United, making it worse for the Seagulls, who looked the better side in the opening stanza.

They upped their game once again after a while, with Jakub Moder also hitting the bar, but couldn’t find a way back into the match.

⏰FT: ????Manchester United 2-0 Brighton ????????Ronaldo capitalizes and ends his goal drought in stellar fashion, with Bruno adding another????????Lewis Dunk sent off for a foul on the through-on-goal Sun ????De Gea with another sensational save! Sum up that game????⬇️ https://t.co/JBm4k075uC

Instead, Bruno Fernandes put the final nail in their coffin with a stoppage-time goal to seal all three points for Manchester United.

Yet Potter was content with his side’s performance and complimented them for putting up a fight in the opening stanza.

He said:

“I thought we were the better team in the first half, I was really happy with our performance, the attacks Man United had been from our giveaways but it’s not easy here to control their transitions, they attack big spaces really well.”

He added:

“We don’t start the second half well enough, we got punished with a world-class finish from a world-class player, then a controversial red card and it was about us trying to hang on, we rode our luck in that period . We gave ourselves a chance, Jakub hit the bar and Danny had that header. I’m proud of the performance. “

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