Euro 2024: Why Germany were denied penalty for Marc Cucurella ‘handball’ against Spain

Germany’s Euro 2024 quarter-final defeat to Spain featured some of the most captivating football of the summer’s premier international competition.

Both teams battled intensely for a semi-final spot, with the host nation believing they had a chance to secure victory in extra time.

Dani Olmo broke the deadlock early in the second half after an exhilarating back-and-forth contest.

Lamine Yamal set up the RB Leipzig midfielder, who fired a low shot past a helpless Manuel Neuer.

Florian Wirtz, another outstanding young talent, volleyed in a late equalizer to extend the game into extra time, thanks to impressive play by Joshua Kimmich.

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The additional 30 minutes were packed with drama as Julian Nagelsmann’s squad felt they deserved a penalty before Mikel Merino’s last-minute header eliminated the host nation from the tournament.

With the score tied at 1-1, Bayern Munich’s rising star Jamal Musiala launched a long-range shot that struck the hand of Spain’s Marc Cucurella inside the penalty area.

Strong appeals from the German players were dismissed by referee Anthony Taylor, who later explained his decision not to award a penalty.

ESPN’s Dale Johnson took to social media to state:

“UEFA’s pre-tournament briefing on handballs gave a specific example just like Marc Cucurella, saying it should NOT be a handball penalty.”

“Arm close to the side, pointing predominantly down/vertically, and/or a position behind line of the body.”

He went on to add the reasoning:

“It differs from the penalty Joachim Andersen conceded against Germany. UEFA deems that arm position to be unnatural and creating a barrier. “

“Understandable fans would think the two decisions are the wrong way around … But they aren’t per intended interpretation.”

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