‘VAR is here to help’ – Fernandes plays down late penalty controversy in Man Utd draw


Manchester United star Bruno Fernandes has played down a late penalty overturned by VAR in his side’s 1-1 draw with Tottenham on Friday.

In the Red Devils’ first match back after the coronavirus break, they made a slow start and fell behind in the opening period to a Steven Bergwijn strike.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side mounted a comeback in the second half, drawing level when their January addition from Sporting CP converted from the penalty spot, but they were denied an opportunity to beat Hugo Lloris in identical fashion late in the game.

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Initially, they had been awarded a spot-kick after Fernandes went down under pressure under a challenge from Eric Dier, who had been the guilty party when substitute Paul Pogba was felled in similar circumstances earlier in the half. However, the call went to VAR and was overturned when it became evident that there had been no foul.

Fernandes was circumspect over the incident, however.

"At the end, I kicked the ball and then found his foot. The VAR is here to help, if it says no penalty we have to accept," he told Sky Sports .

Meanwhile, he indicated that he felt Man Utd had done a strong evening’s work at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, where there were no fans in attendance owing to measures designed to stop the spread of the virus.

"We did very well. It was a difficult game. They scored on the counter but we were in the game. We had a lot of chances,” the playmaker commented.

"We want to win every game bit a good result. After a long stop, we did very well. We have to think about qualifying for the Champions League.”

Since arriving in January, it was the first time he enjoyed competitive pitch time with Paul Pogba, and he says that there is already a connection between the two players.

"When we train in groups, I train with Pogba. I found a good connection with everyone, though,” he said. “Paul won the penalty and I kicked it.”

Man Utd have moved up to fifth in the Premier League standings after Friday’s fixture.

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