We must seek VAR ‘improvement’, says Azpilicueta

Date published: Sunday 25th October 2020 12:33 - Lewis Oldham


Chelsea star Cesar Azpilicueta has criticised how VAR is used in the Premier League after their draw against Man Utd.

The game at Old Trafford was a plodding affair that finished goalless. There were not many moments of note, but there was a contentious decision from VAR in the first half.

Frank Lampard’s side earned a free-kick that was sent into the United penalty box. It headed towards Azpilicueta, who looked to be manhandled by Harry Maguire.

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The referee was Martin Atkinson, and he deemed that it was not a foul. This decision was expected to be overturned by VAR, but a penalty was not given.

Lampard slammed the use of VAR after the game, calling the system ‘confusing’. Azpilicueta told Chelsea’s official website that officials should use the pitch-side monitors more when making decisions:

“On the pitch, I felt yes because I was in front of him [Maguire] and I felt both his arms around my neck and my shoulders.

“The referee can make the decision, the VAR is there and it is very difficult sometimes for the VAR to say yes or no, but I encourage more for the referee to go to the monitor. Martin Atkinson is the main referee so he has to take the main decision and the monitor is there on the side to help him.

“Sometimes it is 50-50 like I felt it was so why not take 20 seconds to go to review it? For me, it is a little improvement to the VAR that could improve it a lot moving forward.

“I don’t say every time there is a contact it should be a penalty.

‘Far from that, especially here in England where you believe in the strong physical contact unless you are far from the goal and you don’t have the intention to play the ball, but especially in the Premier League, a big league with the great players we have, we have to seek improvement. We can all help together to make a better league.”

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