Former English Premier League (EPL) referee, Chris Foy, has admitted Brentford’s equaliser against Arsenal was an office goal and should not have stood.
According to Foy, the goal was allowed to stand because the VAR official, Lee Mason, forgot to draw the lines that would have shown Brentford’s Christian Norgaard was offside in the build-up to the controversial goal.
Mikel Arteta slammed the match officials after the game, wondering why they failed to rule out the goal even when it appeared that a Brentford player was clearly offside before the goal was scored by Ivan Toney.
Leandro Trossard’s opener was cancelled out after the match officials made an error while reviewing the incident which prevented Arsenal from opening up an eight-point lead at the top of the table.
The video assistant officials led by Mason took three minutes to review the incidents that happened before the goal and ended up saying that Ethan Pinnock was not interfering with play by blocking Arsenal defender Gabriel Magalhaes from getting to the ball initially, a decision disputed by Arteta after the game.
Mason then compounded that error by greenlighting Toney’s header and forgetting to check whether Norgaard had strayed beyond Ben White, Arsenal’s last man before he prodded the ball into the path of Brentford’s top scorer.
Reviewing the incident, Chris Foy, Mail on Sunday referee expert and PGMOL representative admitted VAR got the incident wrong.
He said, “VAR Lee Mason was looking to see if there was an offside and whether Ethan Pinnock had blocked off Gabriel in the build-up[of Ivan Toney;s goal].
“However, in the build-up to the goal, Christian Norgaard — whose cross it is that Toney heads in — is in an offside position.
“However, the truth is that VAR didn’t fully investigate the lines…And that counts as human error.
“Had the lines gone down the goal would have been disallowed for offside.”