VAR technology has caused plenty of controversy in football across the globe, but the scenes that unfolded in the 2019 African Champions League final take it to a whole other level.
An issue with the tech has seen a team refuse to continue, play stopped for over an hour, the federation president storm onto the pitch and ultimately mass confusion reign… all in the continent’s biggest club game.
And ultimately the game was called off with half an hour to play as ES Tunis were crowned African champions for the second year in a row in a game that started in May and finished in June.
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The match between Tunis and Wydad Athletic Casablanca was suspended at the 61st minute after the latter scored a legitimate equaliser which was bizarrely ruled out for offside. They demanded it be reviewed by the VAR, introduced for the final, but the referee didn’t check the video.
Widespread reports revealed the technology was not working, as Wydad refused to resume play in extraordinary circumstances. Next CAF president Ahmad Ahmad made his way onto the pitch to consult with officials as the scenes on the pitch became even more ridiculous.
The Tunisian outfit were seen kicking a ball between themselves and playing keepy-ups in the background as discussions went on and players raged over the farce.
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After a stoppage of one hour and 25 minutes, Tunis were handed the victory; winning the Champions League final 2-1 on aggregate in the most unbelievable manner imaginable. According to beIN Sports, Wydad were ruled to have forfeited after refusing to play for such a long period.
Commentators were in disbelief attempting to relay what was happening to viewers around the world.
“So El Karti scored the goal, now this goal was onside. All of these fans inside the stadium saw that it was actually a goal that should have been allowed,” the commentator said.
“Now the problem is, VAR has got a technical issue, and despite the fact that everyone has seen these images, when you actually go to the transmission van, it’s not actually ratified by CAF to use those images for verification.
“So it can’t give you the final decision on a goal or not if it isn’t going through the proper rules and regulations which is video assistant referee. It basically means that the images you can see there are not valid which means that it’s a catch 22 situation and the Tunisian coach has insisted, ’We will not play on until we see VAR show us that was a goal that should have been allowed’.”
“We are just caught in between a couple of conflicting situations that are preventing this game from being continued, it’s been like that for the last hour now. You are still watching a match that has been suspended after the 61st minute. So we do have 30 minutes left to play, whether it can be played now or it needs to be replayed tomorrow or the day after, that’s a very good question. And one I cannot answer right now.”
It’s yet another worldwide controversy for football’s most maligned piece of technology and comes roughly a year after a lapse in the VAR saw Melbourne Victory win the A-League Grand Final in dubious circumstances.
Source link : https://www.news.com.au/sport/football/astonishing-scenes-as-broken-var-wreaks-havoc-in-african-champions-league-final/news-story/7ece1bde71cf785f8fc56275dbba8183
Publish date : 2019-06-01 01:22:40