Liam Keen analysis: Another shocking VAR call but Wolves must improve fast
Subjective refereeing decisions are one thing – but when the rules are no longer being followed, football is setting a dangerous precedent.
All of last season, and to start this season, Wolves have been on the wrong end of some incredibly poor decisions.
This is not a victim-complex, this is real. However, many of them have been somewhat subjective.
The penalty not given to Wolves in added time at Old Trafford, when Andre Onana took out Sasa Kalajdzic in the air, was a terrible decision that the PGMOL even apologised for after the game, but it was still subjective to some extent.
However, at Kenilworth Road on Saturday, Wolves were on the wrong end of a decision where the officials did not execute their own rules correctly, in an absurd showing of incompetence.
Issa Kabore’s cross came in, it struck Joao Gomes on the leg, careered off at a completely different trajectory, and struck the midfielder’s outstretched arm.
Had it struck his arm straight away, Wolves could have had no complaints. But Kabore’s attempt at a low cross was blocked by Gomes’s foot and it striking the arm should have made no difference, considering the referees’ guidelines makes a specific point at saying those exact scenarios will not result in a penalty.
Although it is not ideal, it is understandable why referee Josh Smith gave the penalty in real time, but for VAR to check it for a few minutes and not overturn it, is a disgrace.
Saturday’s VAR official John Brooks has previous, sadly. He was taken off VAR duty for two games last season when he denied Brighton a goal against Crystal Palace by drawing the offside lines in the wrong place.