Mark Clattenburg on whether VAR was right in Man City v Spurs match

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Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
Dom Le Roy

Tottenham showed tremendous fight and spirit to edge past Manchester City on the away goal rule to book a place in the semi-final of the Champions League.

Spurs came into the game with several injuries particularly in central midfield, and their cause wasn’t helped by the fact that Moussa Sissoko had to be replaced towards the end of the first half.

However, Mauricio Pochettino decided that attack was the best form of defence and Spurs were able to bag three away goals and progress to the next round despite conceding four.

There were a couple of controversial moments in the game which were checked by VAR and both decisions went Spurs’ way.

There were question marks over whether Fernando Llorente’s equaliser had hit his arm before coming off his thigh while City had a stoppage-time goal ruled after as VAR adjudged Sergio Aguero to have been in an offside position.

Clattenburg said that Aguero was clearly offside as the last touch came off Bernado Silva.

In an article for the Daily Mail, the referee wrote: “The assistant referee was right in keeping his flag down and waiting for the review, as he may have thought Spurs midfielder Christian Eriksen played the ball straight to Aguero.

“However, it clearly touches Silva on the way. Some may argue that the touch was not deliberate, but that does not matter. As long as it’s a City player with the last touch then Aguero is offside.”

Regarding to Llorente incident, Clattenburg suggested that the referee had to give the goal as the ball went in off the Spaniard’s thigh.

He added: “Earlier, the use of VAR in checking and then allowing Fernando Llorente’s goal was a fantastic example of the system at its best – and the right decision was made.

“For such a critical moment in a high-profile match, it is important that the referee gets a second chance to look at the incident after City claimed the Spurs striker had scored with his arm.

“If the ball had gone in off his arm or hand then it would have been disallowed, even if the contact was not deliberate.

“However, the slow-motion replay clearly showed that the ball went in via Llorente’s upper thigh. There was a suggestion that Llorente’s skin rippled and perhaps the ball did brush his arm – but that contact would have been so slight and the goal is scored with the thigh, not the arm.”

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