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Why referee used a circular red card during Wrexham vs Sheffield United match

Why referee used a circular red card during Wrexham vs Sheffield United match

Referee Dean Whitestone sent off Sheffield United star Daniel Jebbison during the exciting FA Cup draw against National League Wrexham.

Fans were trying to work out exactly why referee Dean Whitestone produced a circular red card during Wrexham's FA Cup tie with Sheffield United.

Even someone writing Ryan Reynolds' next Hollywood scripts won't necessarily come up with anything as exciting as was seen at the Racecourse Ground on Sunday.

The match ebbed and flowed one way and then the other, starting with the opening goal of the game after just a minute, to get the Championship side on their way.

Wrexham came back into it and it looked like the National League side would go through, via an 86th minute goal, only for the visitors to bookend the scoring with an injury time equaliser.

Aside from the goals there was plenty of drama to be found during the 90 minutes, which is certain to feature in the second season of Disney +'s 'Welcome to Wrexham' documentary.

The hosts thought they should have had a penalty in the second half, due to a handball, but the real talking point came through a 71st minute sending off for Jebbison.

It was due to an off the ball incident, which fans couldn't quite make out, leaving many to ask if it should have been a red card, especially with no VAR in the match.

However, it was the fact that the card that referee Whitestone whipped out was circular instead of rectangular that seemed to throw fans off more.

"People are confused about Jebbison’s red card but what I’m more concerned about is that the ‘card’ is a f***ing circle," one confused fan said.

"Not a red card, and even worse the red card was a circle," a second added.

A third noticed that not both cards were the same shape, replying, "Wait, so the red card is a circle, but the yellow card is still rectangular??? Now I’m really intrigued."

A fourth summed up the feelings of many perfectly, posting, "Anyone else notice the red card was circle shaped? Never seen that before."

However, Ref chat forum explained the reason for the cards, saying, "The circular and oval cards were originally introduced to "assist" players who couldn't differentiate between the colours.

"It was also to help the referee who wanted to pull out the quick card, the shape telling him which card he was pulling out."

Rennie used a circle red card during his time in the Premier League from 1997 till 2009. Image: Alamy
Rennie used a circle red card during his time in the Premier League from 1997 till 2009. Image: Alamy

Many others on social media pointed out that they knew the reason for the cards and fans of a certain age remembered that circular reds had been used previously.

"Feel like I haven’t seen a circle red card in years. A classic of the game," one post on social media exclaimed.

Referencing the fact that former Premier League official Uriah Rennie used to use the different shaped card in the past, another continued, "Circle red card, we might never see the likes again. If that doesn’t make you emotional nothing will, that was for you Uriah."

Wrexham weren't the only ones denied a cup upset due to a late goal on Sunday, with Liverpool nearly forcing a draw with Brighton, and taking it to a replay at Anfield.

Kaoru Mitoma had other plans however, scoring an injury time winner for Roberto de Zerbi's side, meaning they've beaten Jurgen Klopp's team twice this season and drawn another game against them.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: EFL Championship, Non-League, Wrexham, Sheffield United

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