Tottenham Hotspur narrowly edged out Chelsea 1-0 during the first leg of the Carabao Cup semifinal on Tuesday night at Wembley.
Harry Kane’s goal from the spot during the first half separated both sides, but the hosts have VAR to thank after the linesman initially raised up his flag for an offside call.
However, referee Michael Oliver consulted the VAR and was rightly advised to give the correct decision.
“I know VAR eventually got the decision right to award Tottenham a penalty and overturn the initial offside, but the officials are going about it the wrong way,” Clattenburg wrote in his SportsMail column.
“Assistant referees are flagging for marginal offside decisions. Why are England not following the way FIFA implemented VAR in the World Cup? What FIFA recommend is to keep the flag down. If a goal is scored, then the offside decision will be checked by VAR.
“Had Michael Oliver blown his whistle before Harry Kane was brought down, or Kane or the keeper had stopped when they saw the flag, then the wrong decision would have stood. That is why it is important to keep the flag down on marginal offside calls and allow the play to continue.”
VAR is set to be deployed in the Premier League starting from next season, and while it is not without some faults, it will surely do teams a lot of good and immensely help the officials in carrying out the right decisions at all time.
Tottenham would have been robbed of a great advantage had Oliver followed the linesman’s decision and had no VAR review to help him out.
Nevertheless, officials must get it right so as not to keep confusing everyone like the case was last night, and doing that and following Clattenburg’s advice will go a long way in making the Video Assistant Referee a success in England.