Barca boss Valverde uninterested in VAR debate after Madrid's post-Clasico complaints

By Liam Blackburn 20 December 2019 5
Barca boss Valverde uninterested in VAR debate after Madrid's post-Clasico complaints

Barcelona boss Ernesto Valverde said debating VAR is a futile exercise after Real Madrid bemoaned the officiating in Wednesday's Clasico draw.

The two LaLiga rivals played out an uneventful stalemate at Camp Nou in midweek, with Madrid unhappy over perceived injustice regarding multiple unsuccessful penalty appeals.

Centre-back Raphael Varane had two shouts for spot-kicks turned down in the opening 45 minutes, the first for a high challenge from Clement Lenglet that left the Madrid defender with stud marks on his thigh.

Varane also had his shirt pulled by Ivan Rakitic in the box but, as was the case with the Lenglet tackle, referee Alejandro Jose Hernandez Hernandez remained uninterested in the appeals and neither incident was checked using the VAR pitchside monitor.

Madrid posted a statement on their website highlighting "two controversial moments" but Valverde was unwilling to discuss VAR in great detail.

"People will always be talking after Clasicos - this was one where we had a two-month build up to it and the post-Clasico debates will always be intense," Valverde told a news conference.

"Some people play football on the pitch, some are in the press room, we've all got to eat! That's what our jobs are.

"I really don't like getting involved in these discussions, there's nothing to be gained. Controversies are always going to be part of football."

Barcelona's president Josep Maria Bartomeu had said he intended to write a letter to the Spanish Football Federation complaining about the use of VAR in last weekend's 2-2 draw with Real Sociedad.

However, Valverde stressed that the use of VAR will never bring an end to the controversies that occur during a game and different clubs will feel aggrieved throughout the season.

"We have talked about this before, with VAR the polemics won't end," he added.

"It is united to football, is in many conversations, many previews and post matches, social gatherings.

"Sometimes we forget that the VAR is here to help the referee but it's the referee who judges.

"Sometimes one club complains, sometimes others. I have the feeling that 2020 will remain the same."

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Liam Blackburn