For Liverpool, the worst ever happened against Tottenham after the introduction of VAR. Curtis Jones was presented with a yellow card for stepping on the ball and inexplicably getting his foot in his ankle, but the referee, looking back at the video, changed his decision to a red card.
The atmosphere was disturbing at that stage, but the match officials’ refereeing team seemed as if they wanted the home team to win. Luis Diaz slipped in a pass from Mohamed Salah and scored the first goal with a brilliant shot, but the assistant referee raised the offside flag.
However, the video shows that the opposing defender’s foot is still on the ground, and he is perfectly onside. Despite this, the first goal was cancelled out due to the inexplicable decision, and Spurs scored the first goal shortly thereafter.
After that, the level of the game was low, with problems piling up, including a scene where he was brought down in the area by Joe Gomez, and a missed card appeal by Destiny Udogie.
The disastrous referees’ handling of the match was not helped by the fact that Mark Clattenburg, who once served as a referee in Premier League and international matches, referred to the communication on the day and said that they had to report to each other in more detail.
“The PGMOL brought in Phil Bentham last year to improve communications between the match officials because of his background in rugby league. As a former TMO his every word was broadcast live, and Howard Webb has been striving for his Premier League officials to make their messages clear and concise.”
“But there was a total breakdown in basic communication at Tottenham on Saturday. Assistant Adrian Holmes should have been shouting ‘offside, offside’ after raising his flag against Luis Diaz. Referee Simon Hooper should have been relaying that to the players, too. All this should have been picked up by their earpieces and heard by VAR Darren England and his assistant Dan Cook at Stockley Park.”
“They should have been under no illusions Diaz had been flagged offside. But for whatever reason, England and Cook thought the on-field decision was onside.”
“When England said ‘check complete’ to Hooper, he was mistakenly confirming not that the Diaz goal was good but that it should be disallowed. England should have expanded on his decision. Instead of ‘check complete’, he should have said: ‘I’ve checked the potential offside. It’s onside, therefore I’m awarding the goal. Check complete.’”
“That way, we would not have this controversy. Webb will be furious, naturally, as will Select Group One manager Jon Moss.”
“The PGMOL have spent significant money to improve how VAR is applied but we are still seeing decisions as poor as these. It is a harsh lesson for England and Cook and they will not make this mistake again.”Daily Mail