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Moussa Dembele gave a cheeky wink after getting Aaron Cresswell sent off in the Europa League, taking inspiration from Cristiano Ronaldo's antics in 2006.
Controversy reigned at the end of the first half as Aaron Cresswell was sent off for a challenge on former Celtic striker Dembele, as the full back grabbed the forward's striker just outside the box.
The referee adjudged that the 25-year-old would have had a clear chance on goal had the full back not impeded him, and subsequently sent him off, whilst others weren't even sure it was a foul.
Dembele played his role in the situation perfectly and further wound up fans by delivering a wink to camera, with fans jumping to the conclusion it was proof of a dive.
Aaron Cresswell is shown a red card deep into first-half added time!— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) April 7, 2022
He was judged to have pulled down Moussa Dembele...
The wink from the Lyon striker says it all 👀 pic.twitter.com/0PefUWytIr
Dembele winks at the camera after a referee previously found guilty of accepting bribes sends Cresswell off— Green St. Hammers (@GreenStHammers) April 7, 2022
Absolute joke how he’s even allowed to be in charge of a game of this magnitude
(Btw it’s not just the red card every decision has been shocking) #COYI #WHUFC #UEL pic.twitter.com/y6QPp6bxoY
It’s the wink mate 🤬. Cresswell was stupid to force a decision but it’s a soft foul and never a red. Dembele knows it too. pic.twitter.com/SMvaWk7utn— HarryT (@HarryTrevelyan) April 7, 2022
Dembele I'd love to knock that wink off your smug face you prick— WACCA147🏴🏴 (@Wacca1970) April 7, 2022
How a referee can stand and justify the Cresswell incident as red-card worthy is laughable. The fact Dembele winks at the camera after shows what a joke this is. UEFA seems to get more corrupt by the week. Disgraceful.— Josh V (@WestHamJoshV) April 7, 2022
Lyon have been a total disgrace tonight. That Dembele wink summed it all up.— Luke (@Komps4) April 7, 2022
Rolling around, cheating, stopping the flow of the game.
Feel sorry for West Ham and Cresswell. Never a red card.
1-1 a great result for 10-man West Ham. Very harsh red card for Cresswell. Ball going away from goal so hardly “ denial of clear scoring opportunity”. Dembele’s wink rather incriminating.— Ian Darke (@IanDarke) April 7, 2022
The wink was reminiscents of the one that Ronaldo had delivered to his own bench, after he 'helped' get Wayne Rooney sent off in the World Cup, 16 years ago.
At the time the pair were Manchester United teammates, when Rooney stamped on Ricardo Carvalho whilst the defender was all over him.
Ronaldo remonstrated with the referee telling him to produce a red card and when Rooney was given his marching orders he produced the infamous wink, maybe the lingering anger is why they're currently in a spat...
On Thursday night, Hammers' fans argued everything from it being a 'dive,' to pointing out the fact that Dembele was going away from goal and using Kurt Zouma's presence as evidence it wasn't an obvious goal scoring opportunity, to argue against the red.
However, if the referee deemed it to be a foul, and with the Frenchman running at speed any contact was able to take him down, then he had little choice but to send him off.
VAR also was never going to overturn it, as it was in no way a 'clear and obvious error' from the man in the middle, no matter what the home fans said.
David Moyes' side actually took the lead at the start of the second half, when Jarrod Bowen pounced on a ball on the box and a deflection from Jerome Boateng helped the ball into the goal.
Tanguay Ndombele back on loan at Lyon from West Ham's rivals Tottenham Hotspur typically came up with the equaliser but overall the English side might be happy to take a draw back to France next week.
Featured Image Credit: BT Sport
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