Manchester City were correctly denied a penalty just seconds before Liverpool opened the scoring in their 3-1 win at Anfield, according to the Premier League.
The ball appeared to strike Trent Alexander-Arnold’s hand on the edge of the Liverpool six-yard and City striker Sergio Aguero was adamant that his side should have been awarded a penalty.
However, referee Michael Oliver waved away the protests, which continued after Fabinho had given the Reds the lead with a sweet strike from 20 yards out.
A Premier League statement said: “The VAR checked the penalty appeal for handball against Trent Alexander-Arnold and confirmed the on-field decision that it did not meet the considerations for a deliberate handball.”
The Liverpool defender himself admitted he was worried about being penalised, especially with the use of VAR.
“I think it [the ball] might have hit my arm but it hit Bernardo Silva’s first,” Alexander-Arnold said.
“You have to carry on playing, they complained but you have to keep on playing.”
City boss Pep Guardiola was furious with the decision and was said to be asking TV officials in the tunnel at half-time why it wasn’t awarded – but he would not be drawn on the issue after the final whistle.
“Ask the referees,” Guardiola said.
“Ask Mike Riley [the head of refereeing] and the referees in the truck.”
Former City captain Vincent Kompany, working as a pundit in the Sky Sports studio, reckoned Liverpool should not even have had the chance to score as they did.
“One way or another you should stop the action,” Kompany said.
“Alexander-Arnold’s arm is in an unnatural position. It’s a penalty.”