Skip to main content

Ex-Premier League referee says the top-flight's use of VAR is 'making a mockery of the league'

Jürgen Klopp Liverpool

Following two questionable incidents at Tottenham Hotspur's 1-1 draw with Watford on Saturday, VAR was back under the microscope come Sunday.

Manchester United's 1-1 draw with Liverpool at Old Trafford was overshadowed somewhat by VAR.

In the lead up to Marcus Rashford's opener for the Red Devils, Liverpool were adamant Divock Origi had been fouled.

Jurgen Klopp and his players appealed to the referee Martin Atkins and the incident was subsequently checked by VAR.

However, the decision was controversially not given and Liverpool were left infuriated.

To rub salt in the wounds, a similar incident arrived minutes later when Sadio Mane had the ball in the back of the net, but VAR ruled he had handled the ball in the build-up.

After the game, Klopp was critical of the decision-making process employed.

"I’m sure Mr (Martin) Atkinson, if there was not VAR involved, would have whistled (for a foul) but he let it go because someone else could make the decision – but someone else is not making the decision."

Ex-Premier League referee Mark Halsey is inclined to agree with Klopp's sentiment it seems.

He believed referee's should have access to a monitor to make decisions themselves and blames Mike Riley (manager of the Professional Game Match Officials Ltd) for obstructing the introduction of such an option.

"The ref has to view the monitor," he told Alan Brazil on his talkSPORT radio show.

"We’ve seen so many inconsistencies with serious incidents missed.

"Refs want to view the monitor but Mike Riley says it’s too time-consuming. It’s making a mockery of the league."


Why it's probably safe to get very excited about Callum Hudson-Odoi

The 10 best Manchester United vs Liverpool games of all time