Nottingham Forest write to PGMOL chief Howard Webb over Ivan Toney goal

Nottingham Forest have written to refereeing chief Howard Webb for clarification around Ivan Toney’s first-half goal in Saturday’s 3-2 defeat at Brentford.

Toney moved the ball for his free-kick, which made it 1-1, and wiped away referee Darren England’s vanishing foam as the official lined up the wall.

Officials did not correct the situation before Toney scored.

He later claimed he was allowed to move the ball by “half a yard either side”.

However that was dismissed by Forest manager Nuno Espirito Santo, who claimed the ball had clearly been “displaced”.

The video assistant referee (VAR) protocol set by International Football Association Board, which sets the game’s rules, says VAR has no authority to intervene on restarts, which England relayed to Forest staff.

It is understood Forest have written to Webb, head of officiating body Professional Game Match Officials Limited (PGMOL), demanding to know how the incident was missed by all the on-pitch officials and question why VAR did not intervene for what they regard as a “serious missed incident” which led to a goal.

BBC Sport pundit Chris Sutton questioned the logic of Forest’s actions in contacting Webb.

“What about taking responsibility yourselves Nottingham Forest?” Sutton said on BBC Radio 5 Live.

“What are the players doing? Why didn’t they shuffle across, spot the danger?

“How the Nottingham Forest players do not react to that, I do not understand. It’s obvious what is going to happen and it’s their job to cotton on to it.

“I think it’s ridiculous and Nottingham Forest need to take responsibility themselves.”

In a social media post, former England and Manchester United defender Gary Neville said “clubs writing to the PGMOL is embarrassing” and “Liverpool and Arsenal started it and set the precedent of this nonsense”.

He added:external-link “The refs should be doing better and are under enormous pressure at the moment.

“It’s in the clubs interests to work with them to make them improve. This public posturing is unnecessary. Speak to them and email them to gain clarification in private but they don’t have to ‘announce’ they’ve written to the PGMOL.

“It’s not going to change the decision and it’s not going to help anyone. It just adds to the pile on.”


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