Why referee didn't check VAR for penalty in UCL final

By Mirror: Sunday, June 2nd 2019 at 15:12 GMT +3 | Football
Sadio Mane kicked the ball into Moussa Sissoko's arm [Courtesy]

Liverpool got off to the perfect start in their Champions League final clash with Tottenham in Madrid.

The Reds opened the scoring in just the second minute through Mohamed Salah, who beat Hugo Lloris from the penalty spot.

Liverpool were awarded a spot-kick when Sadio Mane kicked the ball into Moussa Sissoko's arm, who had it raised in an awkward position.

The ball did hit the Tottenham midfielder's chest first, before rolling onto his arm.

And although the decision was a harsh one from a Spurs perspective, given it came so early on in the biggest game of their history, the penalty being awarded was the correct decision.

Some Spurs fans took to social media to complain that the referee didn't check the VAR system before awarding the penalty.

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Supporters were hoping that the match official would head to the touchline to check the screens before making his decision.

Referee Damir Skomina awarded Tottenham a penalty [Courtesy]

Some are convinced that the penalty should not have been given, as the ball did hit the midfielder in the chest first.

But the referee pointed to the spot, up stepped Salah, and into the back of the net the Egyptian Golden Boot winner planted the ball.

So why did the match official opp against checking the VAR screen?

Referees only check the VAR screen if a decision is so contentious it needs a second look. If a decision is pretty straight forward, and the VAR officials are agreed, they make the decision for the referee, without him having to leave the pitch and stifle momentum.

This is what happened on Saturday. Referee Damir Skomina received an instruction from the VAR officials and the penalty was awarded.

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