Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp insists he is a fan of VAR but believes the process is failing referees and therefore the teams involved.
The Reds dropped their first points of the season after two controversial VAR decisions went against them in the 1-1 draw with Manchester United at Old Trafford.
Klopp said he was so surprised VAR did not rule out Manchester United’s first half goal from Marcus Rashford for an earlier foul on Divock Origi, that he couldn’t even be angry.
Adam Lallana eventually scored five minutes from time in the 1-1 draw at Old Trafford but Klopp was still bemused by the advice given to official Martin Atkinson.
“I calmed everyone down because I knew immediately. They scored the goal and Mr Atkinson immediately signalled VAR,” he said.
“My coaches were already on their toes but I was 100 per cent sure VAR would overrule it but then we have the problem.
“The ref let the game run because he has VAR but then VAR says it was not clear, so he could say it was not a foul so don’t overrule it.
“This does not make sense. It is a clear VAR issue with how we deal with it in the moment.
“I was so surprised afterwards, I couldn’t be angry.”
Klopp's annoyance was echoed by many fans, however, others argued that it wasn't a clear foul and hence, the goal couldn't legitimately be overturned by VAR.
United’s goal came after a clear foul on Origi. Liverpool’s disallowed goal came after a clearly accidental use of an arm by Mane.— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) October 20, 2019
VAR doesn’t just suck the life & passion out of football - it’s almost invariably wrong too. Get rid of it.
If Chris Wood’s goal is overturned, surely Rashford’s has to for the foul on Origi, which is more of a foul? Madness. No one genuinely knows what is going to happen anymore, it’s pot luck— Chris Boden (@bodenknights) October 20, 2019
VAR again. Clear foul on Origi. It’s ruining football.— Tam McManus (@The_Tman10) October 20, 2019
Just seen the Man U goal. Dear me how on Earth is that NOT a foul on D Origi.— Don Hutchison (@donhutch4) October 20, 2019
That wasn't a foul...— ᴀʀᴛᴜʀ ᴛʜᴀ ɢʀᴇᴀᴛ 🏁 (@xartur_kgz) October 20, 2019
Origi wasn't even trying. That fool is holding the wrong leg 😂 pic.twitter.com/nDQbyk3nNi
There’s a difference between physical contact and a foul, and everything slowed down in replay makes it look worse. You can’t tell me there was enough contact to cause Origi to fall and roll around like he did either.— David Preece (@davidpreece12) October 20, 2019
Just seen the claimed Origi foul and if you think that’s a free kick then maybe you should be watching non-contact sports like darts— 🇪🇸 (@Arrizabalager) October 20, 2019
Klopp doing his nut over 'foul' on Origi by Lindelof, but VAR never going to overturn that. Does every touch have to result in a free-kick? So minimal— Laurie Whitwell (@lauriewhitwell) October 20, 2019
Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer played down the VAR debate surrounding his side’s goal, praising the referee for his performance at Old Trafford.
Man United manager backs officials
Liverpool's fury over the alleged foul was compounded when Sadio Mane had a goal disallowed via VAR minutes later for handball, though the Reds did level late on through Adam Lallana to earn a point.
Solskjaer backed the officials’ decisions after the game and felt referee Martin Atkinson deserves credit for allowing the fiercely contested game to flow.
“I thought the referee needs praising,” Solskjaer told BBC Sport.
"It's not often we do that. He let it be a derby game, it wasn't like you couldn't touch anyone."
On the controversy surrounding the opening goal, Solskjaer added: "It's never a foul. I don't think Keano (Roy Keane) would say that's a foul.”
Rashford’s strike looked to be good enough to earn the Red Devils all three points only for Lallana to snatch their great rivals a point with an equaliser five minutes from time.
Solskjaer was left frustrated at the manner of that goal, though he also praised his side for a performance that was a marked improvement from their timid display at Newcastle before the international break.
"It was an easy goal to concede,” the United boss told Sky Sports . “To concede a cross on the six-yard line is disappointing. I thought we had just started creating the counterattacks so it's disappointing.
"We have pace. Dan James and Marcus Rashford are exceptionally quick and they will cause problems for anyone. Those two and Andreas Pereira were very good and I'm pleased with how they performed their task.
"Marcus's movement all game was good - that was maybe one of his best games for us. He was strong and they are the kind of goals we want from him. We had a little video session yesterday and exactly that happened.
"It was a great response from the boys. We have a team that works for each other and maybe this will turn their season. They are disappointed because they feel we should have won. Our fans showed they can see what's happening and we will get there."