Jamie Vardy deserved red, regardless of debate

LEICESTER, ENGLAND - AUGUST 18: Jamie Vardy of Leicester City is sent off by referee Mike Dean during the Premier League match between Leicester City and Wolverhampton Wanderers at The King Power Stadium on August 18, 2018 in Leicester, United Kingdom. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images)
LEICESTER, ENGLAND - AUGUST 18: Jamie Vardy of Leicester City is sent off by referee Mike Dean during the Premier League match between Leicester City and Wolverhampton Wanderers at The King Power Stadium on August 18, 2018 in Leicester, United Kingdom. (Photo by Ross Kinnaird/Getty Images) /

Despite protestations, Jamie Vardy’s challenge was reckless and dangerous, but not nasty. Making it a definite red card and resulting suspension. Leicester City move on.

Evidence that Jamie Vardy deserved his red card against Wolverhampton Wanderers is overwhelming. Here at Foxes of Leicester, we are not detectives; the funny thing is we do not need to be. We have a strong passion for football and Leicester City in general, but can analyse with impartiality.

Yes, Vardy won the ball. Yes it was a 50/50 tackle, but a Sunday league referee should not even allow these wild follow through type challenges. And should send off offenders too. There are multiple angles of evidence recorded, which we reviewed. Along with the letter of the law having no area for misinterpretation.

Leicester’s England forward benefits from his hunger, an imposing element of his game, chasing down the opposition, tough-tacking – yet, must curb volatile or overly intense aspects. Therefore helping himself and the team in his inimitable, marvellous manner. Luckily, Leicester City did not drop points on Saturday, winning 2-0.

The fact that Vardy himself sought out Wolves defender Matt Doherty to say sorry after the game, is telling of the scenario; Doherty said: “To be fair he knocked and looked in and asked if everything was alright. I said it was fine so there were no hard feelings. He said his apologies, so I’m fine with that.”


This type of challenge was ok in the 60s and 70s, but that is between 50 and 60 years-ago. And the league moved on from it – years ago. Some careers and years were taken from victims and, like Gazza, some who made the dangerous challenges hurt themselves in the process. Contrary to some people’s misguided beliefs: the game is a contact sport and will remain so.

It comes down to this simple point, as the man on the receiving end Matt Doherty said himself:

"“I’m fine, I’ve just got some stud marks, my leg wasn’t planted which was beneficial to me. I’m fine.“I think if my leg was planted it would have been worse but a split-second before, I could see it coming, so I kind of rolled with it. He still caught me but I’m okay.”(Via: LCFC LIVE)"

If either foot were planted, the Wolves defender would most likely have had a broken leg. None of us want to see that. If Vardy was in the exact opposite position, us Blue Army members would be outraged at our player’s mistreatment and request for the opponent’s suspension. Rightly so.

On Instagram, Vardy spoke of the incident: “Sometimes in a split second we make the wrong choice. In an instant it can change a game! Learn and move on.”

This is a quote from the FA website in regard to red card rules in the Premier League:

"SENDING-OFF OFFENCES (SERIOUS FOUL PLAY)“A tackle or challenge that endangers the safety of an opponent or uses excessive force or brutality must be sanctioned as serious foul play.“Any player who lunges at an opponent in challenging for the ball from the front, from the side or from behind using one or both legs, with excessive force or endangers the safety of an opponent is guilty of serious foul play.”"

This quote leaves no room for the challenge Vardy made. However polarising it is; even if players make those type of heavy interceptions in Sunday league or higher. Even if a referee mistakenly did not send a culprit off for a similar tackle. Law of the game, is final. If the law stated: ‘a player can follow through with any type of challenge, despite risk of injury to an opponent’, it would be fine, but it does not.

Despite Vardy apologising to Matt Doherty and winning the ball before clattering the player, Leicester City did not appeal the decision. Every verified media outlet and journalist, to my knowledge, agreed with the referee’s assessment at the time and on review. It was further evident, after seeing former professionals who made those types of tackles denounce it, that Vardy went too far on this occasion.

LCFC Live’s James Sharpe correctly stated the England striker meant no harm to the opposition, yet imperilled Doherty.

Overzealous, maybe self-preservation, although not malicious. Correct!

Claude Puel, on the other hand, thought the red card was unlucky. Regardless of his own assertion, he told reporters the Foxes will not refute the three match suspension.

According to Sky Sports the Frenchman deduced: “He was enthusiastic and it is a pity. We need now to find a solution to replace him and it will be a good opportunity for other players to show their quality. Perhaps after touching the ball he touches the player. It was not aggressive and he has been unlucky with this tackle.”

Puel makes a good point: Vardy did not mean to endanger the player. Yet Puel makes one mistake: he did not explain that, because the receiver was in danger, it does not matter that no intent was made.

Leicester City now look to Kelechi Iheanacho to step up like he did preseason, but in a competitive match. Will he ‘do the business‘ for the Foxes – scoring against Southampton, Fleetwood and hopefully Liverpool?

Related Story. Real Iheanacho, please stand up. light

We respect all opinions, if, despite profuse proof, you still disagree with the dismissal – that is fine. Regardless of debate, it seems the expert opinion, officials, club executives, pundits and law are in agreement. Much discussion in football is subjective, although this scenario seems objective. That said, Leicester City look forward to Vardy’s comeback – and let it be a goal scoring return!