VAR backlash continues as Tottenham's Harry Kane is denied penalty v Newcastle


The introduction of VAR (Video Assistant Referee) in the Premier League was always going to involve teething problems.

However, two weeks into the 2019/20 season and you get the impression that the majority of football fans just want it gone.

Lengthy stoppages, questionable decisions, confusion inside the ground, delays of play - it’s been a bit of a nightmare so far.

VAR is designed to help make football fairer. Referees should, with the aid of VAR, always be able to make the right decisions when it comes to certain events on the pitch.

Fans feared that VAR would see the end of pub conversations about contentious decisions - but, if anything, it’s had the opposite effect.

The backlash against VAR reached new heights on Sunday when Tottenham’s Harry Kane was denied what appeared to be a stonewall penalty when Jamal Lascelles took the striker down inside the box.

The Newcastle United defender dived across Kane, who was denied a clear goalscoring opportunity in the process.


Referee Mike Dean didn’t award the penalty but the decision went to a VAR review.

Viewers were convinced that a spot-kick would be awarded once the review was complete - but, to their disbelief, the decision was ‘no penalty’.


Watch the incident here…

Surely that’s a pen?


“This looks like a penalty to me,” former Spurs midfielder Jermaine Jenas said on BBC Radio 5 Live. “They are taking a long time to make this decision. Wow it's not a penalty. I don't think you can get emotional about VAR anymore. The decisions are just so random at times.

“That's twice now looking at replays that I would have given them the penalties. I have no idea. I think that is a shocker from VAR.”

There was also VAR controversy during Sunday's earlier kick-off between Bournemouth and Manchester City, when David Silva was denied what appeared to be another clear penalty.

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