Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale criticises 'inconsistency of VAR'

‘Why is the referee told to look at one but not the other? It’s there for a reason – go and use it’: Arsenal keeper Aaron Ramsdale questions VAR over his side’s controversial last-gasp loss against Man City – and says call to punish his side was ‘SOFT’

  • Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale has criticised the way that VAR is used   
  • Stuart Attwell gave Manchester City a penalty but waved away Arsenal’s claims 
  • Ramsdale felt that Attwell should have looked at his monitor for both incidents 

Arsenal goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale has criticised the ‘inconsistency’ of VAR after his side’s 2-1 defeat to Manchester City.

The Gunners had a penalty claim turned down in the first half of Saturday’s game at Emirates Stadium as Martin Odegaard was caught by City goalkeeper Ederson. Referee Stuart Attwell chose not to look at the monitor on that occasion.

In the second half City were given a spot-kick as Granit Xhaka clashed with Bernardo Silva, with Attwell looking at the monitor prior to making his decision. 

Aaron Ramsdale was frustrated with the ‘inconsistency’ of VAR during his team’s game against Manchester City

Referee Stuart Attwell gave a penalty after Granit Xhaka clashed with City’s Bernardo Silva

Attwell consulted the pitchside monitor but didn’t do so for Arsenal’s earlier penalty claim

Riyad Mahrez ended up scoring the penalty, with City pulling level before Rodri got a late winner.

Ramsdale was hugely frustrated that Attwell didn’t look at the monitor for Arsenal’s penalty claim.

Ramsdale told BT Sport: ‘I am basing it on both penalties – the inconsistency of going to the screen, the referee might have ruled it out straight away when he looked at it. But it is the fact he went to look at it.

‘Both in real time he said no penalty, but only gets told to look at one. Theirs was soft for me but he gets told to look and has given it.

‘I am at the other end of the pitch for our penalty shout. The goalkeeper comes out with his foot and he either catches him or the ball. The Bernardo one, he stood him up and it got given. Penalties are penalties, but for us it is getting told to look at the screen.

The referee didn’t look at the monitor following Ederson’s challenge on Martin Odegaard

‘Both penalties, I don’t know why the referee is told to see one and not the other. It is there for a reason, go and use it. The whole point is to help the game out, in real time it didn’t look like one and slow it down on a screen and it is given.’ 

Arsenal, who had taken the lead through Bukayo Saka in the 31st minute, were livid with Attwell’s officiating of the game, with the referee also sending off defender Gabriel for two bookable offences. 

BT Sport pundit Rio Ferdinand admitted that he was confused by how VAR is being used.

VAR official Jarred Gillett agreed with Attwell that Ederson touched the ball with his toe before making contact with Odegaard.

Ferdinand felt that Arsenal certainly should have been awarded a penalty.

He said: ‘I do not understand with VAR how it was not given.

‘It is clear and obvious, it gets on my nerves, it clouds everything.’ 

BT Sport pundit Rio Ferdinand admitted that he was left confused by how VAR was used

Ferdinand agreed with Ramsdale that Attwell should have looked at the monitor for both penalty decisions.

Reflecting on the decision to award City a penalty, he said: ‘Anywhere else on the pitch, it is a foul. There is a desperation in Xhaka’s actions but if he (Silva) doesn’t go down the game carries on. 

‘I don’t like diving but if you don’t you get punished. You would go down there.

‘I am confused with the decisions. There is no way to justify looking at one but not the other.

‘Referees in the Euros were told to go to the monitor and make a decision. That’s why it was better.’ 

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