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Liverpool v Tottenham VAR error officials benched for weekend games

The fallout from the controversial VAR decision that saw Liverpool’s opening goal disallowed against Tottenham Hotspur continues with the officials involved in the incident benched for this weekend’s fixtures, The Athletic reports.

During the match, Luis Diaz was put through on goal by Mohamed Salah before coolly slotting past Guglielmo Vicario just after the half-hour mark but was flagged offside.

A VAR review subsequently revealed that the decision was incorrect, but VAR officials Darren England and assistant Dan Cook failed to overturn the on-field ruling, which ultimately cost Liverpool.

The Reds fell to their first defeat of the season courtesy of a Heung-min Son strike and a late own goal by Joel Matip that rendered Cody Gakpo’s first-half equaliser void.

Upon further review, PGMOL chief Howard Webb contacted Liverpool to issue an apology, admitting a ‘significant human error’ from VAR.

England and Cook were removed from duty for the rest of last weekend, with PGMOL announcing that the pair had been replaced for their upcoming assignments.

The former was initially scheduled to be the fourth official for the Nottingham Forest v Brentford clash, while Cook was assigned as the assistant referee for Fulham v Chelsea clash. But Craig Pawson and Eddie Smart stepped in.

Both referees also did not get match appointments for the upcoming weekend as the Premier League released its list of officials for matchweek eight this Saturday and Sunday.

Adrian Holmes, the assistant referee who flagged Diaz offside, has also been benched.

England has also been sidelined by the English Football League ahead of the midweek fixtures. 

He was originally set to officiate the Leicester City v Preston North End match on Wednesday, but Tom Bramall will step in.

Simon Hooper, the on-field referee for the Tottenham v Liverpool contest and fourth official for the subsequent Fulham game, will serve as VAR when Everton host Bournemouth on Saturday.

Amidst the controversy, Liverpool have requested access to the audio recordings of the officials’ communication after releasing a strong statement claiming that the incident had undermined the integrity of the sport.

Read more: Liverpool & VAR – The stench of entitlement is off the scale.

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