EPL

Havertz denies deliberately elbowing Newcastle defender Burn: This guy is eight feet tall!

By Sports Desk March 13, 2022

Kai Havertz denied deliberately elbowing Newcastle United defender Dan Burn during Chelsea's 1-0 win on Sunday, insisting "this guy is eight feet tall" and he was simply jumping for the ball.

The Germany star struck a superb 89th-minute winner at Stamford Bridge as the Blues finished a difficult week with a victory that moved them to within 10 points of Premier League leaders Manchester City.

With the game drifting towards a goalless draw, Havertz controlled a fine Jorginho pass before rifling beyond Martin Dubravka, giving the home fans some cheer in the wake of Roman Abramovich being disqualified as owner following the United Kingdom government's sanctions against him.

Abramovich had assets frozen and a travel ban imposed due to his ties with Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia, who ordered an invasion of Ukraine last month.

Earlier in the game, Havertz escaped a red card following a VAR check after he caught Burn with a raised arm while challenging for a header, a decision that caused consternation among the Newcastle players.

However, the former Bayer Leverkusen man said he was simply trying to win the ball against the imposing centre-back, telling Sky Sports: "Sometimes, it looks like this. On the pitch, it's different.

"People know I'm not a player who does things like this. This guy is seven, eight feet tall, and I have to jump. As anyone would know, you have to use your arms to jump. When I jump, and he is two heads higher than me, sometimes there's stuff.

"I can say sorry to him because he has an injury on the head and I feel bad. But you can't tell me I did this on purpose."

Newcastle boss Eddie Howe said "it could have been a red" but was far more frustrated with the decision not to award his side a penalty just before the hour mark.

Trevoh Chalobah had hold of Jacob Murphy's shirt and then seemed to trip the Newcastle midfielder after he entered the box, but neither referee David Coote nor VAR decided a foul had been committed.

Newcastle boss Eddie Howe: "I can't look past the penalty," Howe said. "I'm hugely disappointed with that decision and how they've reached that decision.

"Jacob's had his shirt ripped off his back. Clear penalty. If the referee doesn't give it on the pitch I can understand that but the VAR has to at least make the referee go and review his own decision because if he does he'll realise he got it wrong."

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