There will come a time when a Premier League game passes without VAR dominating the post-match talking points. That day certainly did not arrive today, though an incident at the end of the game between Leicester City and Everton was a little different to most VAR controversies this season.
Fans have become accustomed to goals being ruled out when they had looked perfectly legitimate. On this occasion, with the game deep into stoppage time, the offside flag had been raised by the linesman before Kelechi Iheanacho put the ball past Jordan Pickford. VAR subsequently ruled that the Nigerian striker was onside and the goal stood.
While Iheanacho failed to see the flag and rightly played to the whistle, Everton may feel understandably hard done by as replays seem to suggest Pickford could have been distracted by the linesman's flag.
When VAR confirms you've scored a late, late winner!
📺 Watch reaction to Leicester's 2-1 victory over Everton on Sky Sports Premier League pic.twitter.com/czHxpMqmYc
— Sky Sports Premier League (@SkySportsPL) December 1, 2019
There was a degree of irony attached to the game as the Foxes may have felt they were due a penalty in the first half, but on that occasion VAR ruled against it.
Speaking on Sky Sports after the game, co-commentator Jamie Carragher maintained it was a good day overall for VAR.
The penalty shouldn't have been given so it's done well there. And as soon as I first saw it (Iheanacho's goal) I didn't think it was offside from the line I was in looking at it, and it proved to be the case. So it's a great day for VAR.
The Everton manager is now in a perilous position. The club sit only two points above the relegation zone with talk of David Moyes returning to Goodison Park slowly beginning to gather momentum. That, however, is unlikely to happen before Everton's clash with Liverpool this week.
— Christian Fuchs (@FuchsOfficial) December 1, 2019
Leicester, in contrast, are sitting comfortably in second place in the table, though Brendan Rodgers is now being linked with Arsenal after Unai Emery was sacked before the weekend. It is understood Leicester have inserted an £14 million exit clause in the Northern Irishman's contract that would be triggered if he was tempted to join the Gunners.
While Rodgers admitted that there "probably" is a clause in his contract, he insisted that all the speculation was "hypothetical."