Manchester City’s Champions League fixture against minnows Shakhtar Donetsk was expected to be a one-sided affair.
But nothing could have prepared football fans for Manchester City being on the receiving end of perhaps one of the worst penalty decisions ever seen.
Raheem Sterling was gifted a penalty after blatantly kicking the turf as he prepared for a shot, sending him flailing to the pitch.
“Oh that’s shocking, he kicks the floor,” said the commentators.
“He kicks the floor, that’s remarkable.
“That is one of the worst penalty decisions you will ever see.”
The pacey English attacker was quickly awarded a penalty for his embarrassing attempt at a shot, despite defender Mykola Matyvenko not even being close enough to make contact.
Shakhtar Donetsk players looked on in disbelief as the referee pointed to the penalty spot, and after replays showed the obvious, they reacted.
“You know you can tell by players reactions,” the commentators continued.
“Well I thought ‘there’s not been any contact, he didn’t look close enough to make any contact’.
“It’s given Gabriel Jesus the chance, controversially, to make it 2-0 to City.”
While many called for a review of the decision, the Champions League is yet to introduce a video assistant referee (VAR) system into its competition.
It’s fair to say, social media went wild:
Raheem Sterling trips on the turf, unopposed and the referee awards a penalty kick.
THAT IS A SHOCKER! 😱 #SSFootball
— Abdikhadar hassan (@AbdikhadarH) November 7, 2018
Raheem sterling you diving blunt. At least have the decency to go to the referee and tell him it wasn't a PEN and that you tripped yourself.
— Nakalee (@odinaks) November 7, 2018
— Niv P (@NivZzz_27) November 7, 2018
Raheem Sterling could’ve stepped up to the referee that it wasn’t a Penalty
— Busayo (@busayoSoye) November 7, 2018
THAT IS A SHOCKER!
Raheem Sterling trips on the turf, unopposed and the referee awards a penalty kick. 😱
— Icem4k Football (@SSFootball_) November 7, 2018
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) November 7, 2018
Raheem Sterling has just won the best dive of the season!!
— Gerald Okeke (@Okeygeraldino) November 7, 2018
Sterling made amends to some extent early in the second half, scoring an incredible solo goal for Manchester City to make it 3-0.
“Magnificent from Raheem Sterling, he can maybe put the controversy behind him now because that is what he’s best at,” the commentators said.
More to come.