News From Spain: Referee replaced for Villarreal-Real Madrid tie following VAR error

There has been much controversy surrounding VAR since its introduction in 2018. It has been a polarising subject, with many in favour of its use, and plenty against it too.

The technology has been a regular fixture of La Liga matches for almost five years now, and there has been a number of controversial incidents that the technology has intervened with, some to great effect and others less so. During Monday night’s match between Cadiz and Elche, the latter was the case.

The hosts were leading 1-0 with ten minutes remaining, when Ezequiel Ponce equalised for the basement club in La Liga. Despite replays showing that Ponce was offside in the build up, the goal was allowed to stand, which led to two dropped points for Cadiz, which would’ve moved them out of the relegation zone.

Cadiz were left fuming at VAR following the decision to allow Elche’s equaliser in last night’s 1-1 draw in La Liga.

Replays showed that Ezequiel Ponce, who scored Elche’s goal, was offside in the build-up.pic.twitter.com/5AwPZSgbtG

— Football España (@footballespana_) January 17, 2023

Cadiz president Manolo Vizcaino was furious in the aftermath of the match, and he admitted that it was pointless to seek any form of sympathy from the RFEF.

“Cadiz always has the Chinese turn. Why am I going to call Luis? He is interested in the Super Cup and glamour, small teams are ignored. My two points are not going to be returned to me by anyone.”

The assistant VAR for the match on Monday was Isidro Diaz De Mera, who was intended to be the referee for Real Madrid’s Copa del Rey tie against Villarreal on Thursday. With the error having happened on his watch, Diaz De Mera has been punished by the RFEF and will not oversee the match, which will instead be whistled by Jesus Gil Marzano, as per Cadena SER.

🚨 COMUNICADO OFICIAL @CTARFEF.

ℹ️ https://t.co/aeKprdvSjW pic.twitter.com/zytFa5jOC0

— RFEF (@rfef) January 17, 2023

La Liga has been urged to introduce semi-automatic offsides into the use of VAR going forward, so that incidents such as the one of Monday night do not happen again.

Image via Marca