By Mike Southey

22nd Nov, 2021 | 4:10pm

Keith Hackett shares verdict on Ben Johnson handball incident for West Ham v Wolves

We’re delighted to welcome former Premier League referee Keith Hackett as our exclusive West Ham United columnist. Each week he’ll be giving his views on the biggest talking points at the London Stadium...

Keith Hackett has insisted that it was the right call not to hand Wolves a penalty in their 1-0 win against West Ham United.

The ball appeared to hit Ben Johnson on the hand, but the appeals were waved away by the officials at Molineux.

Hackett shared that VAR did take a look, but were spot on not to intervene as it wasn’t a deliberate act by the young defender.

Speaking exclusively to West Ham Zone, Hackett said, “I think he’s not made his body shape bigger.

“That’s why it wasn’t given with no intervention. I think they had a look, but it wasn’t an intervention, for me, the referee got it right.

“There’s no question the ball struck him, but I don’t think it was a deliberate act by the player to make his body shape larger.”

Never.

Thankfully, the ludicrous handball rules have changed in the Premier League since last season.

If Johnson had done the exact same but one year earlier, he would have been penalised for just blocking the shot and it, unfortunately, hitting his hand.

Common sense has prevailed, which is something that we aren’t used to saying with officiating in the Premier League.

Johnson blocked the ball well, kept his arms by his side and didn’t make himself bigger as Hackett said, therefore no foul was committed.

In other West Ham United news, ExWHUemployee has shared what Jesse Lingard and his agent have told the Irons about January

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