Brighton’s Cucurella gives verdict on whether Kulusevski should have seen red

Dejan Kulusevski
Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images

Brighton and Hove Albion defender Marc Cucurella has spoken about the incident involving himself and Dejan Kulusevski at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Saturday afternoon.

The incident happened in the 27th minute of the Premier League clash in North London when Kulusevski received the ball and was put under pressure by the Spaniard and lashed out with his elbow immediately after passing the ball to Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg.

The Seagulls’ left-back clutched his face afterwards, with television replays showing that the Swedish international fortunately made no contact with Cucurella’s face and was instead aimed at chest height.

Cucurella gestured for disciplinary action to be taken, with referee Craig Pawson showing Kulusevski a yellow card.

The Brighton player believes that a booking for the Spurs player was a fair decision, he told Sky Sports: “Things on the pitch for me are no problem.

“I think after one minute before we finished the first half, I caught his foot and I said sorry, no problem, this is football and his anger maybe is because the team did not play good and I stayed in his back pressing so he cannot play easier.

“This is football, it is not a problem for me, it’s not important.  The referee said a yellow card, because I think for me it was not a red card because he did not touch me, his elbow passed into my face but it did not touch me.

“Maybe if he touched me it would have been a red card but it was a yellow card and this is okay.”

SpursWeb Opinion

Kulusevski was lucky that he did not make contact otherwise it would be been a straight red and ruled him out of the trip to Brentford on Saturday.

While Cucurella, now in hindsight rightly claims the Swede made no contact, his immediate reaction after the incident in which he clutched his face should come into criticism for play-acting.

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