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Pochettino claims VAR has ‘damaged English football’ after Chelsea denied winner at Aston Villa

Mauricio Pochettino claims VAR has ‘damaged the image of English football’ after Chelsea were denied winner at Aston Villa.

Chelsea thought they had sealed a stoppage-time comeback win at Villa Park after Axel Disasi’s header in added time appeared to overturn deficit, only to be prevented by VAR.

Benoit Badiashile was ruled to have fouled Diego Carlos, with Pochettino calling the controversial decision ‘ridiculous’.

@owengavfc chelsea fans celebrating before var denied it. #Chelsea #chelseafc #cfc #spurs #arsenal #arsenalfc #chelseafans #limbs #lastminutewinner #chelseawayfans #avfc #astonvilla #villapark ♬ original sound – Owen

Pochettino told TNT Sports: “Everyone that was watching the game will feel disappointed. Two different things the referee said it was a foul and disallowed the goal and then going to the VAR to confirm.

“The referee is unbelievable and it’s ridiculous. It is difficult to accept, these type of things in the semi-final [FA Cup against Man City] two weeks ago it was handball and it was no penalty, the referee he didn’t check it.

“It is painful as it has damaged English football and I think Villa players and their fans didn’t understand why the goal was disallowed.

“They said it was foul and if you see the challenge what happened if we go into every single challenge like this it is going to be a foul and we wouldn’t finish the game with 11 [players].

“We can talk about the performance or the decision – it is damaging the game.”

Pochettino meanwhile expressed how pleased he was with his side’s performance and they still have a chance to qualify for Europe if they can finish an inconsistent season strongly.

“I am calm and it is only to help,” Pochettino said. “The performance was very good and we played really well it is true in the first half we conceded easy.

“The things we tried to change the team didn’t concede too much. To play Villa who are fighting for the top four I am pleased with the team and the players were good.

“I think that it was what we expected and today was a good opportunity against a good team. Now, we have to move on and it will be in the headlines with the disallowed goal.”

Unai Emery was pleased with his side’s performance and their draw, despite his side losing two points that were seemingly in their grasp.

He said to TNT Sports: “We are very happy because today we achieved the first thing – improving. We wanted to play Europa League last year and now we have a new challenge, which is to play Champions League.

“Chelsea today showed the power. But we are being consistent – to draw at the end is a very good result.

“I want more, of course. Chelsea have very good players. The result was amazing in the first half. We were defending well and we didn’t concede a lot but of course we needed to keep more possession and it is difficult against Chelsea.”

Player ratings (per Sky Sports)

Aston Villa: Martinez (6), Cash (7), Konsa (7), Torres (7), Digne (6), Bailey (7), Luiz (6), McGinn (7), Rogers (7), Tielemans (6), Watkins (6).

Subs: Diaby (6), Olsen (6), Carlos (6), Iroegbunam (6), Duran (6).

Chelsea: Petrovic (5), Chalobah (7), Silva (7), Badiashile (6), Cucurella (6), Caicedo (7), Gallagher (8), Madueke (8), Palmer (7), Mudryk (6), Jackson (5).

Subs: Disasi (n/a), Casadei (n/a).

Player of the match: Noni Madueke

This is what fans on social media are saying as Pochettino claims VAR has ‘damaged English football’ after Chelsea were denied a late winner at Aston Villa…

@MrRedDevil27: As usual, @FA_PGMOL Officials in the Spotlight. The Clowns of English Football, who’ll run and hide behind the @FA, before someone comes out to criticise them.

@BeardOfTheMatch: Why is he complaining… it’s a foul. The correct decision was made by VAR intervention. #AVFC #UTV #CFC #AVLCHE

@Latcollins1978: The only thing that damaged English football was the fact the referee didn’t see it in real time and make the deciding himself. There is a difference between a wrong decision and one you don’t like

@crowhurstsr: It was a clear foul, which could all see from The Holte End. Just surprised it wasn’t called in real time.

@muzzavilla: what’s more worrying is I’m sitting the other side of the stadium and saw the foul yet the ref and linesman didn’t

@cozierpanda: Should remove the saying “clear and obvious” and just replace it with “whatever the VAR official thinks on the day.”

@Charlespurs: VAR is just destroying the sport. It’s every game now. It can’t go on. Maybe the fans need to mobilise and do something at every game. None of us who go to matches like it’s involvement.

@JamieBurns_94: Since Howard Webb took over it’s gotten a thousand times worse something needs to change it’s every game

@mikey_RFC: Like him or not he’s absolutely spot on. VAR has ruined the game, it re-referees the game despite that not being what it’s for. Players and fans can’t celebrate goals like they used to because VAR might rule it out for a foul 20s beforehand, ridiculous and needs binned.

@PatDFarrell: VAR has the game RUINED. Seriously considering watching Premiership football at all anymore… & that’s saying something after 53 YEARS a fan (not of Villa or Chelsea BTW)

@ColinCFCWardrop: So the referee sees it, doesn’t see a foul, awards a goal. VAR intervenes and decides the ref is wrong and changes the decision? Where is the clear and obvious error? It’s blatant interference and cheating. Games gone!

@iron_hammy: arguing with the refs isn’t enough i need them to set the entire country on fire

@MichaelPlant82: Part of the problem with VAR/referee discussion is that this ridiculous reaction from Chelsea players won’t be condemned more than a dodgy offside or goal would. Such a damaging culture to constantly frame officials as the villains.

@markattias: No horrific decision and I’m a Newcastle fan wanting Chelsea to lose but that was shocking to call that an obvious error. Ref staring at it, it’s subjective and definitely not obvious, how it could be over turned and even called to the monitor is beyond me

@Berty23: Of course it was the correct decision. If he was not barged in the back then he heads it away. It was shocking from the ref to miss it in real time. It was not shoulder to shoulder it was shoulder into back and stopped him getting the ball.

@Trentvilla1: Obviously. Literally pushed him out from under the ball only question is why ref needed a replay to see it.

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