VAR starts 2020 at the end of 2019: with an offside decision

By Alex Richards

VAR made his first Premier league 2020 appearance only 10 minutes from New Year ’s Day fixtures - and continued where it left off in 2019. Five goals were ruled out at the weekend for marginal offsides - leading to widespread criticism over the Premier league ’s interpretation of the system.

That criticism was further increased when a Jack Grealish header in Turf Moor was rejected during Aston Villa's clash with Burnley. The captain of the Villans seemed to have led Dean Smith's men to the front when Ezri Konsa returned a horrifying clearance from Charlie Taylor to the penalty area, with the irresistible Grealish passing Nick Pope. At first sight, there seemed to be a small mistake with the effort But as the objective was verified, like all objectives, a slight offside was discovered in the accumulation.

Villa Wesley striker had won a penalty box header, before Taylor's mistake, and the reps showed that his heel was marginally out of play.

As such, much to the displeasure of the Villa players and the surprise of the Burnley players - none of whom had even the slightest notion that the Brazilian was offside - the goal was ruled out. Andy Reid, for BBC Radio 5 Live, declared: “Someone’s always talking about VAR, but it’s just ridiculous.”