6 Goals That Should Not Have Stood This Season
The advent of goal-line technology appears to have closed off one avenue of controversy when it comes to debatable goals this season.
But fear not, talking points have continued to crop up, up and here's a rundown of some of the incidents that have created a stir in recent months.
There are offsides, goalkeepers being dispossessed and a rare sighting of a team taking advantage when it was expected by convention to give the ball back.
Gareth Barry: Everton V Hull City
The phrase "a controversial incident involving Gareth Barry" is not one you will read on too many occasions.
In fact, Gareth Barry hitting the net is an equally rare occurrence, but the on-loan Man City player's questionable goal against Hull—as deemed by the Premier League's dubious goals panel, per the Hull Daily Mail—infuriated Tigers boss Steve Bruce.
Kevin Mirallas was originally credited with the goal, but Barry appeared to get a touch while standing offside. The goal stood, to Bruce's chagrin (see the video clip for his reaction), and was eventually given to the steady former England midfielder.
Stefan Kiessling: Bayer Leverkusen V Hoffenheim
Bayer Leverkusen striker Stefan Kiessling headed one into the side-netting, but when the ball squeezed through a hole into the goal itself, his side were, amazingly, given it.
The player himself has since hinted that he may not count it when it comes to his season total, as per ESPN, which also reported that the striker deactivated his Facebook page after receiving threats in the wake of this "ghost goal."
Eden Hazard: Chelsea V Cardiff City
Samuel Eto'o dispossessed Cardiff City goalkeeper David Marshall, allowing Eden Hazard to sweep the ball home a few seconds later.
These kinds of incidents have courted controversy for decades. George Best saw one chalked off against England for Northern Ireland in 1971, and this one at Stamford Bridge was no different.
Even Chelsea assistant boss Steve Holland, wheeled out in front of the media rather than Jose Mourinho, admitted the goal should not have stood, as Marshall was in the process of bouncing the ball when Eto'o nipped in.
Karim Benzema: France V Ukraine
Karim Benzema appeared to be offside when netting France's equaliser in the second leg of the World Cup playoff.
But, in a twist on "these things even themselves out," Benzema had seen a perfectly good goal chalked off a few minutes earlier when flagged incorrectly for offside. France went on to win and qualify for Brazil 2014.
Eden Hazard Penalty: Chelsea V West Brom
You can't argue with a spot kick, but maybe you can over the decision that led to it.
Ramires went to ground in the box late on, and referee Andre Marriner awarded the penalty, denying the Baggies the chance to end Jose Mourinho's lengthy unbeaten run at Stamford Bridge.
Referees' chief Mike Riley has since apologised to WBA boss Steve Clarke for the penalty award.
Byron Webster: Yeovil V Birmingham City
Byron Webster scored to take the Capital One Cup tie into injury time, but Birmingham were outraged—they felt Yeovil should have given them the ball back after an injury to Dan Burn had held up play.
Yeovil took the lead soon after, but they made amends when they allowed Birmingham's Lee Novak to walk the ball in. A rare case of common sense ruling the day?
The Blues had been winning the tie when Yeovil scored their controversial equaliser, and Lee Clark's side eventually went out on penalties. One suspects this will not be the last such incident over whether a team should give the ball back or not...