Wednesday, January 4, 2012

4 January 2005 - Mendes Denied

On 4 January 2005, Tottenham were denied three points when a Pedro Mendes goal against Manchester United wasn't given, despite the ball being a full meter over the line. The match ended as a scoreless draw.

The two teams met at Old Trafford with Spurs having won six of their previous seven to rise from 15th in the league to 7th. United were on a similar streak, holding down 3rd place after winning eight of the last nine matches. The hosts controlled most of the match, enjoying the better of possession and taking a handful of decent shots, but were repeatedly denied by Spurs keeper Paul Robinson.

Spurs had a few chances of their own, but the day's most memorable moment came in the 89th minute. Mendes, seeing United keeper Roy Carroll off his line, fired a shot from near the midfield line. Carroll raced back and appeared to catch the ball easily, but dropped it. It bounced into the goal, crossing well over the line, as Carroll scrambled to knock it away. Unfortuately for the visitors, neither referee Mark Clattenburg nor linesman Ray Lewis saw the ball clear the line, so neither awarded the goal and the match ended 0-0.

The missed goal sparked cries for the use of goal-line technology, but FIFA has so far resisted any such move. And, ultimately, it had little impact on either club, as United finished in 3rd separated by several points on both sides and Spurs ended up in 9th, though the extra two points would have pushed them up to 8th.

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