This article is part of Football FanCast’s Pundit View series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent quotes from journalists, pundits, players and managers…
Trevor Sinclair has hit out at VAR in Manchester City’s defeat to Liverpool, claiming that Trent Alexander-Arnold clearly touched the ball with his hand. The former City man claimed it was a “great save” from the Liverpool defender.
The handball incident had a huge impact on the game as seconds later Fabinho would rocket home Liverpool’s opener. Shortly after, Mohamed Salah would make it two, and City looked all but down and out after 15 minutes gone.
Sinclair explained to talkSPORT: “I can’t understand how they can give the goal after Trent Alexander-Arnold’s handball because it was that same phase in which they scored.
“Manchester City didn’t clear it and get the ball safe until the ball hit the back of the net, so it’s kind of one rule for one, one rule for another. It’s so complicated.
“VAR are there to stop mistakes, clear and obvious mistakes by the referee. I think we’ve all seen the video evidence, it’s definitely handball.
“It was a save! If that was the keeper doing that it would have been an amazing save. Forget about the first handball, because it wasn’t handball anyway.
“It was a great save from Trent Alexander-Arnold and that led to the build-up to the goal.”
The video footage does show that Alexander-Arnold touched the ball with his hand. Indeed, the ball came at him fast and perhaps he did not have time to move his arm, however, new rules state that this should still be a handball.
At the start of this campaign, the Premier League released the updated laws regarding handballs in the league. The Premier League stated: “Any goal scored or created with the use of the hand or arm will be disallowed this season even if it is accidental.”
However, as Sinclair alluded to, the ball hit the Liverpool right-back in the build-up to their opening goal. Within seconds, Fabinho would go onto score, which makes Alexander-Arnold’s involvement key to the play.
Earlier this season, City themselves were found in the midst of VAR controversy.
Gabriel Jesus’ late winner was denied by VAR after footage showed he touched the ball before he slotted home. However, the incident looked accidental and seemed awfully familiar to that of Alexander-Arnold’s.