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Arteta laments VAR’s ambiguity in West Ham goal decision

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Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta expressed disappointment that the Video Assistant Referee system was insufficiently clear in determining the validity of West Ham’s first goal during their 2-0 victory over the Gunners. 

Tomas Soucek scored from close range after receiving Jarrod Bowen’s cross, but uncertainty arose about whether the ball had gone out of play in the build-up.

Despite a three-and-a-half-minute VAR review examining the best available angles, officials informed Arteta that the images were “not conclusive,” leading to the on-field decision standing. 

In his post-match press conference, Arteta remarked, “It’s just a shame that the technology that we have is not that clear that we can say it’s out of play. It’s done, it’s gone, and there’s nothing we can do about it now.”

The controversy surrounding West Ham’s opener added to the frustration for Arsenal, who had 30 shots on goal and 77 touches in West Ham’s box, marking a record since 2008-09 for a team failing to score in a single Premier League match. 

Former Arsenal defender Dinos Mavropanos extended West Ham’s lead in the second half, and a stoppage-time penalty save by David Raya prevented a third goal for the Hammers.

This incident mirrors a previous controversy for Arsenal, as Newcastle’s winner in November was controversially awarded despite Joe Willock acknowledging that he had taken the ball out of play near the byline. 

Despite the setback, Arteta has not faced an FA charge for his post-match comments.

 

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