Graeme Souness tried his hand at being a conspiracy theorist after Japan’s win over Spain as he thinks “something untoward” is going on at FIFA.
Japan battled back from a goal down to beat Spain to book their place in the World Cup knockout stages.
This win saw the Asian side top Group E, while Luis Enrique’s team finish ahead of Germany on goal difference to claim the runners-up spot.
Japan’s second goal was somewhat controversial as it was awarded following a prolonged VAR check.
Brighton’s Kaoru Mitoma received the ball on the byline and some replays appeared to show the ball crossing the line before he played in Ao Tanaka to score.
But VAR ruled that the ball was still in play, despite no pictures being shown on TV to prove that this was the case.
This riled up Souness, as the pundit went on a long rant before saying that he needs to “tread carefully” on the topic.
“Every television studio, every pundit has an interest in this World Cup will be wanting to see the picture where at the end where this happened,” Souness said post-match on ITV.
“In real time, as it happened, the ball went out, the pictures we’ve seen shown the ball went out.
“Why aren’t FIFA showing us something which is so controversial that it just cost the Germans dearly. Why are they not showing it to us? This is enormous, 45 minutes later, why aren’t they showing it? Clear it up for us, please.
“We were eulogising about Spain, there’s a saying in football don’t be surprised by the surprising, that is such a turnaround.
“It’s hard to understand, a team so in control to being rattled early on to what we think is a contentious goal and they’ve lost the game.
“Fair play to Japan but they never give us. They kept rattling into the challenges, started strong, I come back to it, I can’t believe FIFA aren’t showing us pictures that conclusively show the ball over the line. This is not subjective, this is a black-and-white situation. Show us the pictures.
“We’re getting close to an hour since the incident. The longer they don’t come up with a picture, that last bit would show me that ball is out of play. The longer they don’t produce that picture which shows conclusively that it’s not gone out of play, you’d think there’s something untoward going on. It has to be.
“There are 80 million Germans, right now, going mad that shows that the ball didn’t go out of play. I think every TV studio, pundit, people doing your [ITV host Mark Pougatch] job [presenting] is waiting, why, nearly an hour later are they not showing it?
“Why would you, if you’re FIFA, knowing Germany – it’s not a small footballing nation, create confusion about something on that shouldn’t be going on… I’m going to have to tread carefully. Why would you not want to clear it up immediately?”
Neville was unsurprisingly more assured with his post-match take.
“Absolutely unbelievable from Japan,” Neville added.
“We moved enormously in recent years with technology, hundreds of cameras where you can’t miss anything but we’ve gone backwards in decisions.
“The official on the pitch disallowed that goal, someone in that VAR studio thought they should categorically overturn it.”