Gary O’Neil on controversial Sarabia incident

Despite criticism from certain fans, Wolverhampton Wanderers manager Gary O’Neil praised Pablo Sarabia’s act of sportsmanship against Sheffield United, saying it was the right call.

Sarabia, who scored Wolves’ lone goal in a 1-0 victory, had a chance to put the lead up to two goals when a colleague of his went down and Blades custodian Ivo Grbic was caught out of position. Sarabia, however, chose not to capitalise on the circumstance and declined to fire from range. Rather, he kicked the ball out of play so that Vinicius Souza could get help.

Given the open goal opportunity and the lack of a head injury, Sarabia’s judgement caused controversy at the time and was unpopular with Wolves supporters.

During the news conference held after the game, O’Neil spoke about the event and stated that he thought it was unfair if Wolves had scored.


Through the team website, the manager stated: “It appears he was aware that his player was hurt. If he had simply booted it off the pitch instead of passing it to Pablo, it would have been simpler and more transparent. However, Pablo made the correct decision, you know.

After the interval, Wolves had a decline in play, which gave the Blades a chance to perhaps win the game. A lack of forward passes and stale midfield play added to the mounting dissatisfaction at Molineux. Nevertheless, Wolves held on to win in spite of these difficulties.


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