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26th Oct 2022

“But why?! Why?! The ball went backwards!” – Tottenham rage as Antonio Conte red-carded

Patrick McCarry

Harry Kane looked to have won it, late, late on, against Sporting, but VAR got involved and ruled out what looked to be a legitimate goal.

Marcus Edwards had put the Portuguese side 1-0 ahead, only for Tottenham to grab an equaliser, through Rodrigo Bentancur, with 10 minutes to go. Antonio Conte prowled the sidelines as Spurs sought the winner.

In the final minute of time added on, Ivan Perisic swung in a cross to the back-post. Emerson Royal headed the ball across to the six-yard box and, after a slight deflection off a Sporting body, Kane hooked the ball in, from three yards out.

Tottenham Hotspur Stadium erupted as the win would all but have secured knock-out stage football for Antonio Conte’s side.

However, the match officials were informed that the Video Assistant Referee wanted to study replays. After a lengthy delay of four minutes, and some lines being drawn back and forth, the decision was made to rule the goal out for offside.

The match duly ended 1-1 and Conte was red-carded for his apoplectic reaction to the goal being chalked off.

Commentating for BBC, former Chelsea and Celtic forward Chris Sutton was struggling to get his head around the disallowed goal call. He commented:

“Tottenham are still in the mix but Antonio Conte was clearly incensed because he thought it was a perfectly good goal. So did the players and I’ve got to say, so did I. But the longer the VAR check went on, you thought it could go against Tottenham.”

Back down on the pitch, Eric Dier was told by the referee that Emerson was offside, but he was not having that explanation.

“But why?! Why?! The ball went backwards!”

Spurs defender Matt Doherty, who was beside Antonio Conte when he was sent off, said he was certain his side had clinched victory with the Harry Kane goal. The Ireland international told BT Sport:

“I thought he had headed it across and the ball hit a defender first, so it was a different phase of play?

“I might have to go and have a look at a rule book, because I’m not sure… There’s a few of us in there who don’t have a clue how that wasn’t a goal.”

The result means Tottenham are still top of the standings, but they must travel to Stade Velodrome to face Marseille in the final round of a tight group.

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