Though he accepts Liverpool were denied a “legitimate goal,” Tottenham‘s Ange Postecoglou doubts he would have allowed a goal to balance it out.
Postecoglou was dismissive of criticism over the use of VAR in the immediate aftermath of Tottenham‘s 2-1 win over Liverpool on Saturday.
It came after a major error from VAR Darren England that saw a goal for Luis Diaz ruled out for offside, despite the winger clearly being onside.
An inquest led by Liverpool eventually saw the audio from the VAR booth released to the public, revealing the scale of the ineptitude shown by England and assistant VAR Dan Cook.
While claims the club could push for a replay have become a sideshow in recent days, more realistic may have been an in-game scenario wherein which Spurs would allow the Reds to score to level things out.
A similar situation occurred during Leeds‘ clash with Aston Villa in 2019, with Marcelo Bielsa instructing his side to allow Villa to score after Mateusz Klich netted during an informal stoppage for an injury.
?? “We’ve got pretty hefty responsibilities at our football clubs, but we’re not the custodians – I wouldn’t make a decision that could potentially send your club down on the back of what my beliefs are.”
Ange Postecoglou on if he would have given Liverpool a goal back. ? pic.twitter.com/pwXltprnqF
— Football Daily (@footballdaily) October 6, 2023
But speaking in his press conference on Friday, Postecoglou admitted he would not do the same, taking no responsibility.
“I just don’t see that, if we want managers to be the arbiters of these kinds of things,” he said.
“We’ve got pretty hefty responsibilities at our football clubs, but we’re not the custodians.
“I wouldn’t make a decision that potentially could send your club down on the back of what my beliefs are.
“In that moment, if somebody could tell me they could explain everything that went on, within the 30 seconds that I have to make a decision, it wasn’t going to happen.
“It’s different if it’s something clear.
“It’s quite obvious that it was a bad error, a bad mistake, through lack of communication, but it wasn’t something that was easily explainable.
“Because if it was, I would assume there would have been more uproar during the game than there was.”
The suggestion that there was little “uproar” regarding the decision while the game was being played seems wilfully ignorant, given it occurred in the 34th minute and was very much a talking point immediately after.
But Postecoglou claims it was “a little bit of a weird one,” as he “didn’t think anyone had a sense that something significant had happened.”
“Whatever I say is maybe going to be sent through the prism of maybe we were the beneficiaries of a mistake,” he continued.
“We certainly were that. The facts of it are there was a legitimate goal that Liverpool scored that wasn’t given.
“You kind of look at why it’s not given, because that’s obviously the first thing you question. What’s broken down? Obviously something’s broken down.
“It became pretty clear it wasn’t an integrity issue, it wasn’t a misappropriation of the law, it was an error in communication, a mistake.
“A mistake that cost Liverpool a goal, that’s what it was.”