Referee John Petty has become a viral sensation for his incredibly over-the-top penalty signal in the CONCACAF Nations League final.
United States beat Mexico 3-2 in a thrilling game in Denver, Colorado on Sunday, with Chelsea star Christian Pulisic scoring an extra time winner from the spot after earning the penalty himself.
The initial offence was not given straight away and Petty, the man in the middle, went to the VAR screen to check the incident.
While he was surrounded by players and coaches from both sides, Petty watched a slew of different replays and angles before deciding Pulisic had been fouled by Carlos Salcedo and awarded the penalty.
Every ref has to do VAR like this hahaha
It's like watching prime WWE :joy: pic.twitter.com/JcjDe6BkKl
- Zac Djellab (@ZacDjellab) June 7, 2021
The way he points out for penalty hilarious :joy:
- Sergi :star::star: (@SergiCFC) June 7, 2021
Ref going all out with the penalty signal here #CONCACAF pic.twitter.com/clQf6Mw3wv
- The Comeback (@thecomeback) June 7, 2021
But he did so in even more dramatic fashion than Mike Dean. It was genuinely something straight out of WWE, the way he composed himself, did the VAR signal and pointed to the spot animatedly.
The execution of it was absolutely sensational from the Panamanian official and we now expect every referee to follow his lead and gesture with such passion.
He brought the same energy as WWE's referees whenever someone was getting involved in a match and ended up getting banned from ringside.
The only thing that was missing was good ol' Jim Ross on commentary yelling, "BAH GAWD IT'S A PENALTY!" to create further excitement.
We genuinely cannot stop watching it. Petty did the exact same thing again in stoppage time when he gave Mexico a penalty but Andres Guardado's effort from 12 yards was saved by substitute goalkeeper Ethan Harvath.