The referees’ governing body PGMOL are set to release the audio of the VAR check that failed to award Luis Diaz a perfectly legitimate goal in Saturday’s defeat to Tottenham.
Diaz’s first-half effort had seemingly given Liverpool the lead at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. However, it was initially ruled out for offside by the on-field officials, pending a VAR review.
VAR Darren England (pictured) and his assistant, Dan Cook, apparently misunderstood the on-field decision and failed to indicate a need to award the goal, despite Diaz being clearly onside.
The PGMOL issued an apology for the ‘significant human error’ following the game – which the Reds ultimately lost in the final moments, having been reduced to nine men – while it has been reported that referees’ chief Howard Webb also contacted Liverpool.
The club released their own statement in which they vowed to “explore the range of options available” in order to reach a resolution. This has included making a formal request for the raw audio file of the conversations between England and his on-field colleagues which led to the goal not being awarded.
According to the Daily Mail, PGMOL will release the full exchange, though ‘senior figures’ disagreed on whether the audio should be made public amid questions over transparency.
It is said that talks will be held on Tuesday to decide when the release will take place, given the incident is also under review internally at the body.
In addition to investigating the specific incident which led to Diaz’s goal being chalked off, PGMOL are reportedly set to review their policy of allowing officials to take overseas assignments in between Premier League duties.
England and Cook faced further criticism when it came to light that the pair were part of an officiating team for a match in the UAE just 48 hours before Liverpool’s match at Tottenham.
Former Premier League ref Mark Clattenburg was one of several who suggested the 16-hour round trip midweek could have impacted the VAR officials’ performance.
He said: “It has been speculated that England and Cook’s trip to the UAE on Thursday impacted their performance and I can tell you, those long international trips take it out of you.
“I remember doing a Europa League game in Krasnodar, Russia, on a Thursday. I returned to referee a Premier League match at the weekend and by full time, I couldn’t remember what had happened over the last 90 minutes, I was that tired.”