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Revealed: VAR’s bizarre explanation for no penalty vs. Man City – “BOTH come in high”


Alexis Mac Allister was denied a penalty after Jeremy Doku’s challenge late in the draw against Man City, and the full transcript between the referee and VAR makes for incredulous reading.

With only moments left in the Anfield clash earlier this month, Doku recklessly made a high challenge on Mac Allister in the penalty area, with the Liverpool’s No.10 clearly touching the ball first.

At the time, the expectation was on-field referee Michael Oliver would be overruled or, at the very least, sent to the pitchside monitor by VAR, but that never happened.

And we can now see the full process undertaken by VAR, which only further exposes the incompetency at play. The full transcript reads:

Referee (Michael Oliver): “No [penalty], not for me mate.”

VAR (Stuart Attwell): “Checking possible penalty.”

Referee: “I think the ball is in the middle and he (Doku) just tries to play the ball. There might be some contact.”

VAR: “So there’s clear contact on the ball by Doku. Here’s the ball and then there’s a coming together. Shows Mac Allister coming in, he turns his body. He plays the ball.

“The ball is high, they both come in high. I don’t think there is enough evidence there for a penalty kick. You happy with that?

“He plays the ball, mate.”

Assistant VAR (Nick Hopton): “Are you happy he definitely plays it?”

VAR: “He’s definitely touched it. Mac Allister’s then coming into his space. Mac Allister turns his back into him. It’s a coming together. Ollie, confirm on-field decision of play on. Check is complete.”

Quite how Stuart Attwell, lead VAR, came to the conclusion both “came in high” is staggering to say the least, there’s only one player in an unnatural, dangerous position.

It’s creating a false reality, especially when Doku is described as ‘playing the ball’. Touching it during a careless challenge is not the same as playing it – and they were quick to claim the City player got there first, which does not appear to be the case.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Sunday, March 10, 2024: Liverpool's Alexis Mac Allister appeals for a penalty during the FA Premier League match between Liverpool FC and Manchester City FC at Anfield. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Compounding all of this is the Premier League‘s Independent Key Match Incidents Panel ruled the decision was correct, as a “genuine attempt” was made to play the ball.

As per ESPN, the panel also voted 4-1 that there should have been no VAR intervention. It gets more bizarre by the second, how can they not see what everyone else does?