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Celtic: VAR controversy over penalty decision

Celtic: VAR controversy over penalty decision - Celtic News

Celtic will feel hard done by after a controversial penalty decision went against them in the 2-2 Old Firm draw.

The Lowdown: No penalty

In the second half at Ibrox, Celtic were denied a penalty as Karl Starfelt’s goal-bound volley was blocked by the hands of Connor Goldson.

The Bhoys were 2-1 down at the time after Rangers staged an early second-half turnaround following Daizen Maeda’s opener just five minutes into the contest.

Ange Postecoglou’s side eventually found a late equaliser when Kyogo Furuhashi turned in from close range to keep Celtic’s nine-point lead at the top of the table intact.

The Latest: Reaction to the decision

Celtic left Ibrox with a point that will suit them a lot more than Rangers considering their league position and the nature of their equaliser.

But the game could’ve been different had the penalty been awarded or even reviewed by VAR, with journalist Craig Finn tweeting: “Perplexed” – alongside a picture of the incident.

Sky Sports co-commentator at the game Andy Walker said on the replays of the incident: “Yeah it does hit his hand, and his hand is high.”

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The Verdict: Game-changing decision

Despite Celtic eventually clinching the draw, the game – not to mention the title race – could’ve panned out differently had the penalty been given and subsequently put away.

The ball certainly struck the hands of Goldson with them up by his head, almost pushing the ball away, however, there was little to no reaction from any Bhoys player.

Rangers survived the VAR check, which perhaps surprisingly brought no extra action, with John Beaton not asked to review the decision, presumably because of the little distance the ball travelled before the contact.

The Bhoys remain six unbeaten against the Gers now in all competitions, with Furuhashi’s last-minute equaliser arguably saving VAR from more scrutiny amid the debatable incident.

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