With the blues leading 1-0, Rodri looked to have handled the ball inside the City penalty area. The fans saw it, the players saw it. Even those watching at home had their hearts in their mouths as the ball bounced up onto the Spaniard’s arm.
The referee waved away the claims, only for VAR to take a second look at it. What seemed like an eternity later, VAR concluded it wasn’t handball and allowed play to continue, much to the anger of the home support, and the derision of the Liverpool fans, who continually claim watching City is boring, yet still watch the blues regardless of them being a visual sedative.
The anger was clear after the match as fans took to social media demanding to know why the penalty wasn’t given and claimed Everton were denied a point. Someone even had the time to create a montage of penalty decisions that City have had this season, while others referred to Raheem Sterling being offside when the blues beat the reds 2-1 back in 2013! Some people have far too much time on their hands.
But some took issue with the apparent fact that Everton were denied a point when VAR decided not to award a penalty. Whilst it should have been a penalty, the home side would still have to score it, so rather than being denied a point, Everton were denied the chance of claiming a point. Bit of a difference there.
However, another issue was raised in relation to Everton’s precarious position near the bottom of the Premier League table, and Liverpool’s hopes of winning the league for the second time since 1990. The Mirror’s David Maddock asked the following question:
“What if #EFC are relegated by a point? Or City win title by 2 pts? When the decision is so crassly, abysmally wrong, and when the stakes are so high, what happens? The ref even said after it was a pen. So what are the consequences?”
Well David, the consequences are that a whole season is not defined by one incident in one match. All teams have thirty-eight matches. That’s thirty-eight chances to get three points or more points than those around them over the course of the season. If Everton are relegated by one point, should they really look at one VAR decision in February?
What about losing to 5-2 at home to Watford, 1-0 at Brentford or 2-1 at Norwich? Everton have had plenty of opportunities this season to claim three points but haven’t taken them. Are you really going to blame Everton’s demise on one decision when there have been, so far this season, eighteen chances for the Toffees to pick up more points than they have?
And what of Liverpool? The Mersey reds have drawn six and lost two matches so far this season, giving them eight games where they could have won more points but failed to do so. If Liverpool ultimately finish second and if Everton are relegated, then both really only have themselves to blame for not being better. It is as simple as that. If City don’t win the league, we only have ourselves to blame and won’t look at a decision or two and say that’s why we lost.
All teams have benefitted from dodgy VAR decisions since its inception and all teams have had decisions made to their detriment. Both Liverpool and United have had some odd decisions go for them in the same way they’ve been left scratching their heads wondering why one went against them. Again, it happens to all teams. The only difference is when it’s City, it seems to get blown out of all proportion.
Of course, being dirty oil cheats and passing brown envelopes to officials in the darkened alleyways of Manchester must be the only explanation why VAR can’t get it right!
The crux of the matter is that VAR’s only consistency is that fact they are consistently crap and it simply isn’t good enough. The FA need to come up with a solution to VAR or take the decision to scrap it altogether.
How many clubs would actually miss the technology if it wasn’t there?