Gabriel Jesus was the first ‘victim’ of a video assistant referee-assisted decision in the Premier League.
The Brazilian forward, 22, thought he had slotted home his second goal of the game - and Manchester City’s third - when he tapped into an empty net in the second half.
But after a short delay, VAR replays showed the initial pass from Kevin de Bruyne to Raheem Sterling found the latter marginally offside.
West Ham fans were left jubilant as the goal was chalked off - having suddenly found themselves three goals down in their season opener.
46': Second Half starts
51': West Ham 0-2 Man City
53': West Ham 0-3 Man City
55': VAR overturns Man City's third goal.
Gabriel Jesus becomes the first player to have his goal overturned via VAR in the Premier League. pic.twitter.com/ytX9w9S0kr
— Squawka News (@SquawkaNews) August 10, 2019
Fans of the Manchester club, though, were left frustrated as replays at first glance appeared to be tight, despite having a two-goal lead at the time thanks to Jesus and Sterling.
Replays also validated Sterling’s strike later in the match, but it was the penalty kick won by Riyad Mahrez which caused greater controversy.
Substitute Sergio Aguero saw his spot-kick saved by goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski, but a re-take was ordered as the West Ham man was found to be off his line.
The Argentina forward converted the second attempt which left home fans frustrated en-route to a 5-0 home defeat.
It is the first game week - and only the second match - in which video assistants can help Premier League referees make decisions, with clubs ruling to introduce it in 2018.
The first, Liverpool’s 4-1 thrashing of newly-promoted Norwich, saw the new system make it’s debut - but not without a blip.
Although VAR was not required to make any major decisions - all goals were checked and confirmed as valid - a technical flaw saw the start to the second half delayed.
How does VAR work in the Premier League?
Match referees in England will be able to review decisions in four ‘game-changing’ instances.
That includes where goals, penalty kicks and red cards are awarded - as well as cases of mistaken identity.
VAR can also alert the referee to an off-the-ball incident which he may have missed, which could result in a dismissal.
There are some differences to how it will work in the Premier League - compared to UEFA competitions and the men’s 2018 World Cup.
One of those major differences is that referees will not have to view the pitch-side monitor for a replay; those in the VAR studio will make the call and the referee will generally accept it.
That monitor can, though, be used where an off-the-ball incident is brought to his attention.
Cutting out the use of the monitor is said to be able to save approximately 90 seconds per decision, which should help mitigate some fans’ fears.
‘You can’t celebrate anymore’
The decisions added to some fans’ fears that replays will slow the game down, with the officials taking minutes to make the right calls.
One user posted on Twitter fears that they could not even celebrate goals any more, for fear they would eventually be overturned.
Another fan, similar enraged, argued the technology has ‘ruined football’.
But there is still plenty of time for VAR to win over its critics as the system seeks to eradicate referee errors in the top flight.
VAR got it right but why such a delay?
Did they have to warm up a VCR? pic.twitter.com/Nr1Nblbd2S
— Andrew Williams (@AMW_FC) August 10, 2019
You cant celebrate a goal anymore. Everytime it goes in, you will have to wait to see if it's a VAR situation. You never get the time back either for the delay. Having said that if it gets the right decision, nobody should complain.
— ©00[&th€9@ng🛵 (@coolandthegangs) August 10, 2019
— Ian Cheeseman (@IanCheeseman) August 10, 2019
For people complaining about VAR, the rules are the rules. Sooner we get consistency the better. The delay is there because people are doing something wrong, more of these decisions means they won’t
— Josh Holland (@joshholland_) August 10, 2019
VAR has ruined football so many delays 😔
— Paul Jones (@pauljonerjones) August 10, 2019
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