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Pep Guardiola Slams VAR After City Denied Penalty Against Southampton

Pep Guardiola (Photo Credit: Reuters)

Pep Guardiola (Photo Credit: Reuters)

Kevin de Bruyne and Riyad Mahrez both scored twice in Manchester City's 5-2 win over Southampton in the Premier League,

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola was left scratching his head after his side were denied what looked like a clear penalty in their Premier League victory over Southampton on Wednesday.

While the incident had little impact on the outcome as City won 5-2 to move 14 points clear at the top of the table, Guardiola described it as incredible.

The score was 1-1 when Phil Foden was tripped by Alex McCarthy after the Southampton keeper had taken a poor touch.

Foden managed to stay upright but was clearly disadvantaged, although referee Jonathan Moss did not point to the spot and even after a VAR check, McCarthy was deemed not to have done anything wrong despite replays to the contrary.

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“Referees are professionals, they have to do their jobs,” Guardiola said. “We are happy with 5-2 but at that moment it was 1-1 in a tough game and they were better than us.

“The penalty (decision) was incredible. I don’t understand it. Maybe one day they will explain the rule around VAR.

“Hopefully, one day they can explain why one is a penalty and the other isn’t. Jon the referee cannot see it but if the VAR can’t see it.”

VAR has come under fire in recent weeks with Fulham having a goal ruled out against Tottenham Hotspur because of a harsh handball decision.

“The goal from Fulham disallowed against Tottenham,” Guardiola said. “I don’t have anything against Tottenham but I don’t understand how it was disallowed. There are things I don’t understand.”

Kevin de Bruyne struck twice for City, his first goals since returning from injury, while Riyad Mahrez also bagged a brace as City responded to Sunday’s defeat by Manchester United with a convincing performance.

“It’s important for Kevin and Riyad to score goals. We need them,” Guardiola said. “Now it’s rest and then Fulham.

“It’s one game at a time. There are nine games left. Games like today are so difficult and so tough.”

first published:March 11, 2021, 04:18 IST