We’re delighted to welcome former Premier League referee Keith Hackett as our exclusive West Ham columnist, each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at the London Stadium…
Keith Hackett claims Michael Oliver did well to keep tensions low at full-time of the West Ham and Wolves clash on Monday.
The Hammers were 3-2 victors in a thrilling game at Molineux. However after the final whistle, tempers flared between Pedro Neto and Jesse Lingard and the majority of players on the pitch rushed to get involved.
Oliver used his experience to prevent the situation from boiling over and defused it efficiently, according to Hackett. No cards were shown for the incident and those involved seemed to calm down relatively quickly.
“He’s alert and experienced enough to understand if there are any potential flashpoints as players and managers leave the field of play,” Hackett told West Ham Zone in an exclusive interview.
“Because he was alert – and by heck, he was in quick – he stopped a potential flashpoint – a mass confrontation. I think in referee terms, he was better than brilliant.
“It’s a demonstration of why he is England’s number one referee. He’s bang in form and refereeing extremely well.
“I thought he handled the game with great maturity. A difficult game, not easy, broken up play etc, but he kept it under control and did really well.”
West Ham did everything they could to run the clock down in the closing minutes of play at Molineux. At full time, Neto took exception to Lingard’s behaviour with sparked the moments of unrest.
As Hackett said, Oliver did well with the situation and it was over relatively quickly, but it could have been a bit worse.
The Hammers picked up four cautions in the game. Craig Dawson and Issa Diop were booked before 10 minutes of play had gone. Lingard and Tomas Soucek were shown yellow’s in stoppage time.
It was a huge win for David Moyes’ side and see’s them rise to fourth in the Premier League. With eight games to go, they’re in pole position for Champions League qualification.
In other West Ham news, the Hammers would be crazy to not go in for this international goal-scorer this summer.