Mark Halsey

Former Premier League referee Mark Halsey delivers verdict on Joe Ralls’ dismissal against Spurs

Former Premier League referee Mark Halsey has delivered his verdict on Joe Ralls’ dismissal against Tottenham Hotspur.

Eric Dier’s early strike was enough to secure three points for Spurs, but the main talking point was Mike Dean’s decision to dismiss Joe Ralls in the second-half at Wembley.

The midfielder was shown a straight red card by referee Dean following a challenge on Lucas Moura, a decision that has sparked debate across social media.

Former referee Halsey, who dished out 37 red cards in the Premier League, has given his verdict on the decision.

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Speaking to the Sun, Halsey said: “People called it cynical yet that word does not actually appear in the laws of the game.

“Referee Mike Dean had two things to consider. ‘Was it a reckless challenge from Ralls on Tottenham’s Lucas Moura with excessive force, endangering a player’s safety with brutality which would result in a red card?'”

“‘Or was it a reckless challenge when a player acts with disregard to the danger to – or consequences for an an opponent, which is a caution.

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“Dean decided it was the first option and sent off the Cardiff midfielder. But I would have given him a yellow card because I felt it wasn’t a challenge with excessive force.”

Ralls was dismissed for only the second time in his senior career, his first coming during his loan spell with Yeovil Town in the 2013-14 campaign.

Cardiff manager Neil Warnock was unhappy with the decision, and the Bluebirds will reportedly appeal the midfielder’s three-match ban.