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Furious Arteta slams VAR decision to overturn penalty


Mikel Arteta Ian Wright Europa Villareal

Arsenal manager, Mikel Arteta has fumed at the decision of the VAR to disallow his side a penalty in the 1-0 home defeat to Merseysiders – Everton at the Emirates on Friday night.

The Gunners were undone by goalkeeper, Bernd Leno, whose blunder from a Richarlison cross led to an own goal in the 76th minute, gifting Carlo Ancelotti’s men their first win on Arsenal’s ground since 1996.

The hosts would have taken the lead earlier after the referee awarded a penalty for a foul on Dani Ceballos by Richarlison but the decision was overturned after a VAR check ruled spotted Nicolas Pepe in an offside position during the build-up.

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Reacting to the decision, Arteta said that the club is being affected by the VAR, coming amidst fans protests against club owner, Stan Kronke, following his involvement in the controversial breakaway completion, European Super League.

“Well, this is because it is building up and enough is enough, and today, to be fair, I had enough. We have had many of them, and no one explains. When they explain, they say, ‘sorry, it was a mistake’ but unfortunately it is affecting a lot of people, and it is affecting our job and most importantly our football club,” Arteta told the club’s website.

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The Spaniard who demanded an official apology for the alleged error also lamented that the apology is usually done “behind a telephone” and not publicly.

He added that “I cannot understand it (VAR) and I’ve been in football long enough and I can watch it 10 times and if I want to find it, I cannot find it.”

Asked if the defeat is linked to the controversy surrounding the ESL, Arteta said, “No. We knew that that was happening, we knew that our fans wanted to express their feelings and we made preparations with that in mind and it is not an excuse.

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“We lost the game because we had to define the game in the crucial moment, we had the openings or the chances, no clear chances that we wanted, we didn’t do that and then we conceded an own goal. Obviously when we earn the right to score with the decision that was taken away,” he said.