Congratulations to Aston Villa… the first victims of VAR in 2020!
The Premier League strugglers thought they had taken the lead in their crunch New Year’s Day clash with Burnley when Jack Grealish headed home at Turf Moor on 11 minutes.
But the dreaded video technology then intervened and disallowed the goal – due to Wesley’s heel apparently being offside in the build up.
Looking back at the footage, the Villa forward appeared to be level with two opposing defenders.
But the VAR officials in Stockley Park decided otherwise, ruling the back of his foot was millimeters offside.
The decision once again calls into question whether VAR is being used correctly in English football.
VAR should only be used to reverse ‘clear and obvious’ mistakes for offside decisions, football lawmakers IFAB insisted this week, and not for marginal offside decisions.
“Clear and obvious still remains – it’s an important principle. There should not be a lot of time spent to find something marginal,” the general secretary of the International Football Association Board, Lukas Brud, said.
“If something is not clear on the first sight, then it’s not obvious and it shouldn’t be considered.
“Looking at one camera angle is one thing but looking at 15, trying to find something that was potentially not even there, this was not the idea of the VAR principle. It should be clear and obvious.”
But the Premier League have been checking every goal and the Villa decision is just the latest controversial offside call this season.