Blundering VAR official AXED and replaced for Arsenal vs Man City


John Brooks has been axed as the VAR official for both Liverpool vs Everton and Arsenal vs Manchester City.

On a weekend dominated by refereeing howlers, Brooks disallowed a Brighton goal against Crystal Palace after making a ‘human error’ and failing to draw the offside lines from the correct defender.

Brooks had been due to act as VAR for Monday night’s Merseyside derby and the Arsenal v Manchester City match on Wednesday, but Professional Game Match Officials (PGMOL) has confirmed Brooks has been replaced by Andre Marriner and David Coote respectively for those matches.

However, Coote who is set to be in charge of the VAR has not escaped his own controversy with Arsenal and decisions. Coote took charge of the recent defeat against Everton which saw a penalty call between Gabriel Magalhães and Neal Maupay not given.

In 2020, Coote was relieved of a weekend’s refereeing and VAR duties after making a big mistake in the Merseyside derby. Coote failed to check for a red card offence for Jordan Pickford’s horror challenge against Virgil van Dijk.

Manchester City will hope that the refereeing focus is absent from the massive game on Wednesday.

PGMOL’s chief refereeing officer Howard Webb has called a referees meeting for Tuesday in the wake of the two high-profile errors made in the Premier League over the weekend.

The other involved dedicated VAR Lee Mason, who failed to check an offside in the build-up to Ivan Toney’s equaliser for Brentford at Arsenal.

Appointments for the next round of Premier League matches are due to be confirmed at midday on Tuesday.

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