'I don't understand' - BT pundit baffled by Leeds controversy in 2-1 loss v Everton
Michael Brown was left baffled on Wednesday night when VAR failed to check a potential handball by Luke Ayling as Leeds United lost 2-1 to Everton.
As a ball was played into the box, Ayling jumped up to head it away but missed the header and the ball clearly made contact with his arm.
Ex-Leeds midfielder Brown saw the incident, which VAR didn’t even have a second look at.
The BT Sport pundit was left scratching his head over why referee Michael Oliver wasn’t handed any assistance at that moment.
“It was right below us. I said straight away ‘they’ve got to look at this’, Luke Ayling’s arm,” Brown said on BT Sport 3 on Wednesday night.
“A couple of seasons ago that would have been that he’s gone up with his head, he’s just missed it but his arms out to get some leverage. But if VAR look at that, they’ll be saying, ‘is that a natural position? What is it?’.”
Brown added: “The assistant referee below us is looking right along the line. We’re very close to the incident so we can see it.
“I don’t understand how they’re not even looking at it, they’re not even discussing that.”
Handball now a moot point
Whether it was handball or not, Everton won the game.
If Leeds have pegged them back then you could understand if there was a big uproar about it but the fact that it didn’t have an impact on the match means this latest VAR controversy will be swept under the carpet.
It definitely looked as though it could have been a handball and a penalty for the Toffees.
The Athletic journalist Phil Hay also says VAR should have checked the incident while a number of Leeds fans on Twitter thought it was a handball.
A definite penalty if VAR would have checked it but Ayling had a good game besides I thought.
— Damien Cummins (@Damien_Cms) February 3, 2021
That was handball by Ayling.
— Chris 🤍💛💙 (@Chris_CD2010) February 3, 2021
— Through It All Together (@ThruItAllLUFC) February 3, 2021
If it was awarded, that would have been yet another penalty Leeds have conceded this season with the Whites conceding from six spot-kicks [WhoScored] so far this season in the Premier League.
Marcelo Bielsa’s side has conceded so many soft goals this season from corners and penalties.
While it’s fine that they’re able to outscore opponents on a lot of occasions, there are also days where opposing defences tighten up and frustrate them.
Everton goalkeeper Robin Olsen was in good form on Wednesday night and Leeds conceded two very soft, sloppy goals.
Bielsa must find a way to fix this.
In other Leeds United news, the Whites want a playmaker in the summer.