A footage from a fan at Anfield appears to suggest Wolves’ disallowed goal against Liverpool in the FA Cup third should have stood.
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The two Premier League teams played out an entertaining 2-2 draw on Saturday but the game was overshadowed by two controversial offside decisions.
Liverpool went behind after a poor pass from Alisson gifted Goncalo Guedes an opening goal, though Darwin Nunez levelled the scores before half-time with a superb volleyed finish.
The Reds then took the lead after the restart when Cody Gakpo tried to clip the ball over the top for an offside Mohamed Salah – Wolves defender Toti made a failed attempt to clear the ball, with the ball landing at the Egyptian star who slotted home.
VAR Mike Dean determined that as Toti had made a ‘deliberate play’ on the ball a new phase of play had began and Salah therefore could not be offside.
Wolves were furious with the decision but Hwang Hee-chan managed to get an equaliser not long after, before the visitors thought they had found a winner in the 81st minute through Toti.
The move began with a corner from Matheus Nunes, which was headed by Nathan Collins and then a second time by Hwang before returning to the Portuguese star, whose cross rebounded to Hwang before being turned in by Toti.
But, the defender’s celebrations were cut short by the linesman’s flag and it was not clear at first which player was deemed to have been offside, and it was not the goalscorer.
After several minutes of confusion, broadcaster ITV claimed it was Nunes who had been flagged as offside but VAR had been unable to find a camera angle to show his position, so VAR had to stick with the on-field decision.
Wolves’ bench were incensed and Julen Lopetegui later revealed that a tactical camera they use – which gives a bird’s eye view of the pitch – revealed Nunes was onside.
— Lopateg ay we. (@NunoArmy) January 7, 2023
Now fan footage from the game also appears to back that up, with Nunes having run back into an onside position by the time Hwang heads the ball, which resets the phase of play – with Alexander-Arnold playing everyone onside.
‘The offside that we had – we have seen it, the offside doesn’t exist, I’m sorry. It’s impossible,’ said Lopetegui.
‘Someone has told him [the referee] it’s offside, but we’ve seen the images, it doesn’t exist. The decision is wrong. I make mistakes every day, and sometimes they do too. It is a pity, because I’m sorry, it’s not offside.’
Asked what made him so sure, the manager added: ‘Our tactical camera – at the time I have seen the replay and it was [even] better in the dressing room.’