Arteta rants over VAR decision that saw Newcastle break their unbeaten record

November 6 – Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has called out “embarrassing” refereeing decisions after a controversial VAR decision ended his team’s unbeaten streak in the Premier League.

The outburst came after Arteta’s Arsenal lost to Newcastle United thanks to a controversial goal. Anthony Gordon’s strike was checked for three offences – the ball being out of play, a foul in the buildup and an offside call against the goalscorer. All three were cleared by the match officials and the goal was allowed to stand.

The decision has sparked the latest questioning of the standard of match officiating in the Premier League, following uproar from Liverpool after a crucial VAR mistake led to three points being dropped after a goal was unfairly ruled out despite being clearly onside.

With Arsenal forward Kai Havertz lucky not to be sent off after a dangerous challenge in the first half, the game was feisty from start to finish.

The loss was Arsenal’s first of the season, as they drop to fourth place behind Liverpool, Manchester City and Spurs (who have a game in hand and play Chelsea tonight).

Arteta took to the post-match interview to lay bare his frustrations with the quality of match officials.

“We didn’t deserve to lose the match playing in their ground and we lose because of clear and obvious decisions,” the Spaniard fumed.

“It is embarrassing, it is a disgrace, that’s what it is, a disgrace. We’ve been taking it up (with the PGMOL) for months. There is too much at stake, we put in so many hours. I’m here to represent the football club and to get my team to compete at the highest level, the margins are so small, it’s a disgrace, embarrassing.

“It is how I feel. The amount of messages we’ve sent saying this cannot continue. I’m sorry, embarrassing. I’m defending my players when I have to, I defend my job when it is not good enough. I have to be here, to say it now, it is not acceptable, too much at stake.

“We have to talk about the result and talk about how the hell this goal stands. I feel embarrassed, I have to be the one to come in here and defend the club and ask for help because it is a disgrace that this goal is allowed.”

The situation is highlighted given the added context that the Premier League denied the authorisation of the AI-based VAR used in the 2022 World Cup, opting to trust their selected match officials instead.

Arsenal take a break from English refereeing as they return to Champions League action, facing off against Sevilla at the Emirates in midweek. They their Champions League group with six points from the opening three games.

Contact the writer of this story, Harry Ewing, at moc.l1702170065labto1702170065ofdlr1702170065owedi1702170065sni@g1702170065niwe.1702170065yrrah1702170065