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HOWLER WATCH: Lewis Dunk slams 'embarrassing' referee after extraordinary decision

Referee chaos as he disallows a goal, then gives it and leads all the players in a state of confusion

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Referee Lee Mason before confirming Brighton and Hove Albion's equalising goal scored by Lewis Dunk from a quick free kick: Peter Powell/PA Wire.

Referee Lee Mason before confirming Brighton and Hove Albion's equalising goal scored by Lewis Dunk from a quick free kick: Peter Powell/PA Wire.

Referee Lee Mason before confirming Brighton and Hove Albion's equalising goal scored by Lewis Dunk from a quick free kick: Peter Powell/PA Wire.

Brighton defender Lewis Dunk pointed an accusing finger at referee Lee Mason after what has been described as one of the most extraordinary decisions ever seen in the Premier League.

Mason sparked farcical scenes at The Hawthorns as West Brom claimed a priceless 1-0 win over Brighton to keep their survival hopes alive.

Kyle Bartley’s early header clinched a 1-0 victory for the hosts and the Seagulls missed two penalties – only for the officials to steal the headlines.

Brighton thought they had levelled at the Hawthorns under huge controversy when Dunk curled in a quick free-kick, with referee Mason blew his whistle – before quickly blowing again – but in between Dunk had shot and scored.

Players from both teams surrounded Mason to complain and the referee eventually gave the goal – only to finally reverse his decision after a chaotic few minutes and pull the game back for the Seagulls to retake their initial free-kick.

"I have got to come here and speak in front of the cameras, why doesn't he?" asked Dunk.

"I scored, a massive protest in front of him and he changed his mind. He wouldn't speak to me at half-time, there was too much mayhem to speak to him.

"All I know is I got told I can take the free-kick, took it and scored and it got disallowed. You have probably seen it more times than me."

The Premier League explained the decision in a statement on Twitter, saying: “Lewis Dunk takes a quick free-kick and bends the ball into the net but after consulting the VAR, referee Lee Mason has overturned the goal because the whistle had been blown a second time before the ball had crossed the line.”

But the decision-making process, which took a number of minutes to be concluded, was heavily criticised.

Gary Lineker was equally scathing on Twitter, as he suggested the confusion was a first in football.

To make matters worse for Brighton, they missed two penalties in the game and Ireland striker Aaron Connolly missed an open goal as West Brom secured a crucial win in their battle to beat the drop.

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