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Wayne Rooney Surprised By VAR Process For Contentious Disallowed Dutch Goal

Wayne Rooney Surprised By VAR Process For Contentious Disallowed Dutch Goal
Eoin Harrington
By Eoin Harrington Updated
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We were treated to the first VAR controversy of EURO 2024 on Friday night, with the Netherlands having a second-half goal ruled out in their Group D clash with France.

On paper, this tie looked to be a blockbuster, though it failed to live up to its billing on a testing evening in Leipzig.


Kylian Mbappé did not play a minute despite being named on the bench, and his invention in attack could have been the final piece in the puzzle for France.

The French had the best of the possession and asserted control over the contest in the second half but, for a brief moment towards the game's conclusion, it looked as though the Dutch may take home the spoils.

A scramble in the French box saw the ball fall to Xavi Simons, who rocketed his shot to the bottom right corner of Mike Maignan's goal to put the Oranje ahead.

However, the joy of the fervent Dutch support was soon to be dissipated by the sight of the linesman's offside flag.


Simons' teammate Denzel Dumfries was adjudged to have interfered with Maignan's ability to play the ball from an offside position, leading to the goal being chalked off.

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VAR rules out contentious Netherlands goal v France

The decision to rule out Xavi Simons' strike split opinion among fans and pundits, but the BBC panel were all in agreement that the goal should have stood.

Wayne Rooney, Cesc Fabregas, and Alan Shearer were all surprised that the goal had been disallowed - even after a lengthy VAR check which took almost three full minutes.

Rooney would express surprise that VAR official Stuart Attwell had not sent referee Anthony Taylor to the pitchside monitor to review the incident, even after spending so long mulling over the decision.


There's no way that should be disallowed, in my opinion. I think it's a goal. It's frustrating, the amount of time it took.

I think, if you go to the monitor, at least the referee can see it and make his own decision and opinion on it.

Whatever opinion was given from Anthony Taylor...from my point of view, it's on target, it's a goal.

Cesc Fabregas would echo Rooney's point, saying that calling the English referee to the pitchside screen was the "least" the VAR team could have done.

I think we have to question a little bit the referee and VAR here.

The referee, you can maybe have seen it in a different way because everything happens very fast. But the VAR should have called him out to the screen at least to make sure he made the right decision.

For the most part, the officiating at the EUROs has been praised, with several innovations making VAR processes more concise and efficient.

It has been a stark contrast to the inconsistent refereeing and lengthy VAR delays we have become accustomed to in the Premier League of late.

Perhaps, then, it was no surprise that the incident in Netherlands v France was the first controversy of the tournament, with both key men involved Premier League referees.

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