VAR disallows Iran’s goal vs. Spain and Twitter is livid over the referee’s decision

(IranSportsPress – CBS Sports) – Instant replay does a lot of good. It allows officials to go back and make the right call in a questionable situation, and it can also keep matches fair. VAR in the FIFA World Cup has been largely unobtrusive to this point, but that ended during Spain’s 1-0 win over Iran. On the seventh day of the World Cup and its sixth use, VAR reared its ugly head to wipe off an equalizing goal for Iran, ruling that it was offside on the free kick entry.

As you can hear in that clip, there’s a lot to unpack. While the linesman did have his flag up, it came up extremely late. In addition, the call itself comes down to the head official. The head referee didn’t follow the assistant referee’s call, which is why the play went to VAR, eventually overturning the call to an offside in agreement with the linesman. It’s worth noting that eventually the right call was made and the goal was disallowed.

None of that matters, however. We’re at a point where everyone not from Spain is rooting for the underdog Iran. Which means that VAR is officially bad.

Spain is, of course, praising the gods for VAR right now, and this will undoubtedly spawn some discussion. With how scientifically VAR looks at offside calls — and it is incredibly scientific — debates over whether VAR reviews of it go against the spirit of the rule may start to emerge.

It’s perhaps worse for those watching that this goal kept Spain ahead. It’s hard not to wonder what the reaction would be if the roles were reversed.