MLS Apologizes to Union After Refs Miss the Most Obvious Red Card of All Time

from PHL17 broadcast

Your Philadelphia Union remain tied for first place in Major League Soccer despite suffering their first loss of the season this past Saturday.

It was a 2-1 defeat in Toronto, but early in the game Jayden Nelson went studs high on Philly’s Kai Wagner with an obvious red card tackle that only resulted in a yellow:

It’s an obvious red card. He spiked Wagner’s leg and came in way high, which is a sending off. Guys have come away from these with broken bones and ligament damage. Even with video review available they still got it wrong, and then the league came out and issued this statement as part of the weekly disciplinary report (bold emphasis is mine) –

The MLS Disciplinary Committee has suspended Toronto FC forward Jayden Nelson for one match and fined the player an undisclosed amount for serious foul play in the 19th minute of Toronto’s match against the Philadelphia Union on April 16.The play was reviewed under MLS Disciplinary Committee Parameter 3, where the match officials see an incident, and do not issue a red card on a case of clear and obvious simulation/embellishment that meets the conditions for suspension. Under Parameter 3, the MLS Disciplinary Committee shall issue either a one-match suspension on incidents in which the Professional Referee Organization acknowledges an on-field Referee/Video Assistant Referee (VAR) error and the Committee is unanimous at red card and one match suspension and action taken; or the MLS Disciplinary Committee shall issue a two or more match suspension on incidents in which discipline warrants at least a two-match suspension.

Nelson will serve his one-match suspension on April 24 against New York City FC

The Union should have played the rest of the game up a man, but didn’t, and ended up losing, so we’ve hereby ruled that the result does not count. We’re putting a big, fat asterisk on this loss, and the Union remain unbeaten. We officially do not recognize the 2-1 defeat in Toronto.

At least the league apologized, even though it does jack shit for the Union. Nelson is suspended against NYC, since you can’t retroactively hand anything to the team that was on the receiving end of the incorrect call.


Apology not accepted. They hate the process!