PRO GM Walton explains contentious play in HOU-DC 1st leg

It's the play everyone is talking about after Sunday's Eastern Conference Championship first leg between D.C. United and the Houston Dynamo.

Replays showed Houston defender Andre Hainault hooking the arm of D.C. attacker Raphael Augusto and hauling him to the ground as the United midfielder was racing in on goal. Referee Ricardo Salazar did not whistle for an infraction, and Peter Walton, general manager of the Professional Referees Organization, explains why.

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"From the angle I saw in the stadium I thought it was a foul," Walton told MLSsoccer.com following the match. "Speaking to Ricardo afterwards, he didn't have the angle I had. He thought it was two players coming together and not a foul."

Walton, who was on-site at BBVA Compass Stadium, says he did not have the benefit of reviewing a replay, but he provided a technical breakdown of the play from an officiating standpoint.

"Had there been a foul called, and of course it wasn't, I would've expected a yellow card," Walton said. "Looking at it in real time, I thought the tracking defender [Houston's Luiz Camargo] could have influenced the outcome of that particular play and the benefit of the doubt would go to the defending team in a situation of a denial of a goal scoring opportunity. That's my opinion from seeing it in real time."