VAR explained: Welbeck decision spot-on

2 Dec 2020
Danny Welbeck, Brighton & Hove Albion

Ex-ref Chris Foy looks at last weekend's VAR decisions focusing on incidents at Brighton and West Ham

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Former Premier League referee Chris Foy explains the processes behind the decisions made by the on-field match officials and Video Assistant Referees from Matchweek 10.

TV Info
Danny Welbeck, Brighton

Incident: Brighton were awarded their second penalty of the match when Andrew Robertson was adjudged to have fouled Danny Welbeck inside the box. Referee Stuart Attwell awarded the spot-kick after consulting the pitchside monitor. 

Foy's view: From the referee's position, you can understand why he hasn't awarded a penalty. In real time it appears that Robertson has kicked the ball. But when the VAR looks at the slow-motion replays, factually, Robertson kicks Welbeck and it's a foul, and therefore a penalty.

Was it a clear error not to award the spot-kick in real time? That's the debate. But the referee has gone over to the screen and made the decision himself, which for me is the right call. 

TV Info
Ollie Watkins, Aston Villa

Incident: Ollie Watkins scored a late equaliser for Aston Villa, but the VAR ruled that the Villa striker was just offside. In the build-up, West Ham defender Angelo Ogbonna put both of his arms on Watkins as he ran through on goal, but a penalty was not awarded. 

Foy's view: Let's deal with the offside first. It was a really tight call, but ultimately the correct one. The VAR had to draw the offside line on two West Ham defenders to ensure nothing was missed. This obviously took a little bit of time, but it's important to get the right outcome.

The penalty appeal is subjective, and the VAR felt that it wasn't a clear error not to award a spot-kick as the holding wasn't sustained and didn't meet the threshold for a holding offence. There are some in the game that feel it was a foul, but in my opinion we got to the right outcome. 

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