Gary Lineker has delivered his verdict on the VAR decision that eventually cost West Ham three points against Brighton last night.
The Hammers took the lead early against the Seagulls at the London Stadium but were pegged back late on after a brilliant Neal Maupay strike.
Things could have been very different though, had VAR not intervened and ruled out our second goal early on in the second-half.
A win against Brighton would have been absolutely huge for our season. We only took a point from the match in the end though and the draw ended up feeling like a defeat.
The VAR decision cost us dearly. But was it the correct one? Gary Lineker weighed into the debate last night.
Gary Lineker delivers West Ham VAR verdict
The BBC pundit was speaking on Match of the Day (Wednesday, December 1st) last night and offered this opinion on the controversy at the London Stadium:
“Antonio disallowed goal, it’s a big turning point in the game really, because that makes it 2-0 and it’s probably all over. He’s definitely offside, it doesn’t look like it touches it on that angle but the next one here, you watch the ball here, it does look like it bounces off him. It clearly comes off [Shane] Duffy first but it’s not deliberate, therefore it doesn’t count.”
By the book, Lineker is right. If Antonio did get a touch, he was offside. Many fans were questioning that decision but it must be remembered that two players from the opposing team have to be goal-side in order for you to be classed onside.
There are two problems with Lineker’s comments, however.
Firstly, it cannot be proven that Antonio actually touched the ball at all!
And secondly, it took the VAR officials in Stockley Park over three minutes to make the decision. Wasn’t VAR brought in to deal with clear and obvious errors?
If a decision takes longer than three minutes to make, then it’s not a clear and obvious error is it!
The fact that no pundit has even mentioned this is infuriating. If it had happened to Manchester United or Liverpool, there is no way that goal would have been ruled out. And if it was for some reason, there would have been uproar in the media for days after the game.
VAR has been very useful at times but there are still some huge faults in the process and the people operating the technology.
More transparency is needed. Those who made that decision last night should have come out and explained why.
That way, the players, managers and fans would at least know the thought process behind the decisions being made. As things stand, there is so much confusion and misunderstanding regarding the whole process.
Let’s hope that the entire system improves drastically…and fast.