Watch: Replays cast strong doubt on decision to give Atalanta a penalty

By Oliver Fisher -

There continues to be controversy surrounding the decision to award Atalanta a penalty during last night’s game at San Siro for what was adjudged to be a foul on Emil Holm.

As a corner came in from the left side, Holm went down holding his face claiming that Olivier Giroud had struck him with his boot, and although nothing was given on the field Orsato pointed to the spot after a VAR check.

The slow-motion replays available cast strong doubt on the decision, mainly because Giroud definitely did not touch Holm’s face with his boot and there are big question marks about whether he even catches him at all.

Teun Koopmeiners would go on to convert the penalty, which ended up earning Atalanta a draw from a game in which they were largely second best. Stefano Pioli made it clear after the game that he was not happy with the call.


Tags AC Milan Emil Holm Olivier Giroud


  1. I didn’t agree with either decision midweek but can understand how both were given. This though!!!!

    It was the speed in which he gave it that got me – he took half a look at a not particularly high boot and said to himself, “yep, that’s a penalty”. It’s incompetence, nothing less.

  2. I think this penalty was given not for foul on the player but hitting the player on chest with foot which is dangerous and is what causing the penalty.
    Giroud should have been careful lifting his foot to such height.

    Referee cannot judge whether he is stopping goal or not every case. The rule is simple if player has made a dangerous foul its a penalty.

    1. It’s in the chest because Holm lowered his body to play with his head. This doesn’t mean the defender should not try to hit the ball with his foot.

      Also, I would agree with you if there was power in Oli’s foot, that may harm the attacking player, but he basically extended his leg in front of Holm. Such situations occur numerous times per match. As Papa_frezz above mentioned, the speed with which Orsato took the decision is astonishing. A referee should always, always, always look for at least a couple of camera angles and real-time + slow-mo. This should be compulsory, way too many VAR mistakes would be prevented if you don’t rely on single footage to make the decision.

  3. Remember the Kjaer-penalty a month ago? Even Milan-fans were saying “it’s not a penalty”. And the opponent actually hit Kjaer in the head there.

    This was never a penalty. If it were, there should be 10 penalties each match.

    1. Rugby-tackling Theo in the penalty box lead to free kick to Monza a week ago. If they followed that ruling, Giroud should have been awarded a freekick for Milan for Holm crashing into his foot.

  4. Don’t understand the controversy here. That he didn’t kick him in the head? Newsflash: kicking someone in the chest/arm is also kinda illegal.

    It’s another soft call against us and it sucks, but this has been pretty consistently called in Serie A. Every time there is a slight kick (leg, head, torso, whatever) it goes to VAR and it mostly ends up a penalty. It sucks but that’s how games are officiated now.

    1. Exactly! I don’t see why this is so egregious.

      Doesn’t matter if the player held his head or what not afterwards. That’s irrelevant. You can’t kick someone in their upper chest, got no ball, inside the box and think that’s ok. This is a pen, clear as day. Giroud should know better.

    2. It’s a soft call. The problem is for most people who’ve watched football for more than ten years we’ve seen lots of kicks far more aggressive never called. Contact is everything when judging a foul, defenders used to have a little bit of freedom to make a play on the ball we’d see contact regularly when viewing the highlights. In this case two players were going for a 50/50 ball and the touch. Giroud is actually Holms was clearly flopping which I thought was a card worthy offense. By definition “High boot moves are exemplified by the motion where a player leads with the studs of his boot.” Now there’s some subjectively for kicks to the head but that seems pretty cut and dry to me.

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