Man United FC

VAR controversy as West Ham go 1-0 up against Man United when ball looked out

West Ham took a 1-0 lead against Manchester United in the fifth round of the FA Cup at Old Trafford, but the hosts thought the ball had gone out.

Following a sluggish first half, the freshly crowned Carabao Cup champions fell behind early in the second half when Said Benrahma curled one into the far corner barely inside the box.

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Nevertheless, during the build-up, United claimed the ball had gone out when Tomas Soucek was pressured by Casemiro on the left touchline.

He passed the ball to Emerson Palmieri, and with United players halting and not playing to the whistle, he found Benrahma, who finished well.

The goal was awarded, and the referee checked with VAR, who determined that they couldn’t determine whether the entire ball had gone out.

The event was reminiscent of the scenes in the World Cup when Japan scored a contentious victory against Spain.

The goal was first disallowed because it appeared that the ball had gone out of play when Brighton’s Kaoru Mitoma crossed for Ao Tanaka.

Early photos suggested this, but the angles first transmitted were deceiving, and a 4K image afterward revealed that it was the proper call to award the goal because the ball had stayed in marginally.

Overhanging the line still qualifies as being in play, even if it doesn’t always appear to be on first glance.

Supporters erupted in outrage, with one declaring, “The ball’s out of play, and yet the referee and VAR STILL award the goal to West Ham.”

“Wait, so VAR doesn’t have the cameras to show that the ball was out before the West Ham goal?” wrote another.

“The ball was literally out of play for West Ham’s goal, how is that just allowed to happen?” said a third.

A fourth was perplexed, tweeting: “I reviewed that West Ham goal and the ball had gone out of play using only my television’s stop button. It’s beyond me how VAR didn’t reach the same conclusion with all of its technology.”

United felt Casemiro had equalized, however, unlike in the cup final on Sunday, VAR judged that he had strayed offside when he headed home.

However, the Red Devils equalized not long after when Nayef Aguerd put past his own net. Alejandro Garnacho scored a spectacular goal to put United ahead, and Fred secured the victory in stoppage time.


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