Guardiola questions decision to award Llorente goal

Date published: Thursday 18th April 2019 7:01

Fernando Llorente Tottenham Manchester City

Pep Guardiola has questioned the decision to award Fernando Llorente’s goal as Manchester City lost a dramatic Champions League tie on away goals.

Spurs edged out Manchester City on away goals after a thrilling night at the Etihad Stadium saw the quarter-final tie end 4-4 on aggregate after City’s 4-3 victory.

Unbelievably, five goals in the opening 21 minutes were not the story of the game as the two decisive moments came courtesy of VAR in the final 20 minutes.

First Llorente’s crucial third goal for Spurs, which turned out to be the one to send them through, was allowed to stand after referee Cuneyt Cakir checked footage and ruled that the striker had not handled the ball prior to it hitting his hip and going in.

That drama was nothing compared to what happened in injury time as City thought they scored the goal they needed when Raheem Sterling struck from close range.

The scenes of celebration resembled those that followed Sergio Aguero’s famous title-winning goal in 2012, but the mood soon turned sour as replays showed Aguero was marginally offside and it was chalked off.

Guardiola, who saw his side’s quadruple hopes crumble, has been a big advocate of VAR in the past, but questioned the Llorente decision.

“I support VAR,” he said. “It is just to see the goal maybe from Llorente’s handball.

“From one angle it is handball. From another it is not. I am for fair football.

“When it is offside, it is offside. I think in the future, even in the present it will be fair.

On Sterling’s goal being ruled out, he added: “I don’t know, I saw the action and the people decide it is offside, it is offside. What can I say?”

 

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